Difference Between Lunar and Solar Eclipse

Edited by Diffzy | Updated on: September 14, 2022

       

Difference Between Lunar and Solar Eclipse Difference Between Lunar and Solar Eclipse

Why read @ Diffzy

Our articles are well-researched

We make unbiased comparisons

Our content is free to access

We are a one-stop platform for finding differences and comparisons

We compare similar terms in both tabular forms as well as in points


Introduction

Heavenly bodies like the sun and moon are what provide the planet with its natural light. While the moon is a satellite that orbits the Earth and reflects the sun's light in a gentler form during the night, the sun is a massive blazing star that emits intense light to illuminate the blue planet. The sun, moon, and earth are the three celestial bodies involved in a solar or lunar eclipse. Eclipses of the sun and moon occur naturally when their lights are momentarily partially or completely concealed from view.

A solar eclipse occurs when the moon passes between the earth and the sun, completely or partially obscuring the sun for a period of time. A lunar eclipse happens when the earth moves in front of the moon and the sun, casting a shadow on the moon that partially or completely obscures it for a period of time. The science of eclipses is incredibly fascinating and astounding. Here, we will contrast and study the differences between solar and lunar eclipses.

The main difference between a solar eclipse and a lunar eclipse is that a solar eclipse can occur at any time the earth is thought to be passing through a lunar eclipse.The most frequent form of eclipse is a total solar eclipse, which occurs when the moon completely blocks out the sun and its entourage.

Solar Eclipse vs. Lunar Eclipse

When a solar eclipse happens, all the planets, including the sun, moon, and Earth, are in perfect harmony. The moon appears between Earth and the sun, blocking the sun's light either constantly or sporadically. When the moon fully blocks out all or a portion of the sun, it is referred to as a "full solar eclipse."

A lunar eclipse occurs any time the Moon enters the Earth's shadow for a longer period of time, a lunar eclipse occurs.Additionally, such an alignment only occurs on the day of a full moon if the Sun, Earth, and Moon are exactly or extremely nearly in harmony (in syzygy). The proximity of the Moon to each node of its orbit determines how long a lunar eclipse lasts and what shape it takes.

Difference Between Solar Eclipse and Lunar Eclipse in Tabular Form

Table: Solar Eclipse vs. Lunar Eclipse
Parameters for Comparison
Solar Eclipse
Lunar Eclips
Meaning
A solar eclipse occurs when the moon blocks the sun.
A lunar eclipse is an eclipse in which the moon looks dark because it is passing through the shadow of the earth.
Position
Sun and Earth are separated by the moon.
Between the sun and moon is Earth.
Frequency
one time every 18 months.
Every two years
Occurence
throughout the day
happens at night
Phase
New moon
Full moon
Duration
5-7 minutes
An hour
Appearance
Appears in some places only.
Appears in many places.

What is Solar Eclipse?

An eclipse of the sun results when the moon obscures the sun's brightness. Eclipses happen when the moon passes in front of the sun during its orbit around the Earth and blocks the sun's vision, either in a complete or partial eclipse.

A solar eclipse occurs when sunlight cannot reach the earth, resulting in the shadowing of some areas of the globe by the moon. Generally speaking, this only happens during the new moon and only when the moon is visible from Earth. If a solar eclipse takes place, the Sun, Moon, and Earth will always be in synchronisation. The moon, which appears between the two bodies, blocks off Earth as well as the sun's light source. A total solar eclipse occurs when the moon completely blocks the sun; a partial solar eclipse happens when only a portion of the sun is obscured. An Indian phrase called "Surya Grahan" was created to describe a solar eclipse.

Three different kinds of solar eclipses exist:

  • A total solar eclipse occurs when the moon completely blocks out the sun and its umbra and penumbra fall on Earth.A Partial Lunar Eclipse:
  • A partial lunar eclipse occurs when the moon just partially blocks the sun, casting only its penumbra onto Earth.
  • When the moon's disc completely obscures the centre of the sun's disc and its antumbra as they are projected onto Earth, this is known as an annular solar eclipse.

What is a Lunar Eclipse?

A lunar eclipse manifests itself whenever the moon moves farther into the shadow of the Earth. Additionally, such an alignment only occurs on the day of a full moon if the Sun, Earth, and Moon are exactly or extremely nearly in harmony (in syzygy). The proximity of the Moon to each node of its orbit determines how long a lunar eclipse lasts and what shape it takes.

A selenelion or selenehelion occurs when the Sun and the eclipsed Moon are both visible at the same time. You can only see this occurrence just before or just after sunset or dawn, since both bodies will be visible at nearly opposite points in the sky.

Each total lunar eclipse causes a selenelion to appear to observers; it is not a planetary event that occurs separately from the eclipse.

The length of an eclipse may be affected by how far away the Moon is from Earth. When the Moon is getting close to apogee, the point in its revolution where it is the farthest from Earth, its rate of rotation slows down the most. The breadth of Earth's umbra barely changes when the Moon's orbital separation changes. Therefore, if a fully eclipsed moon occurs close to apogee, the full eclipse will remain longer.

A total lunar eclipse occurs when the earth completely engulfs the moon, preventing it from receiving any light.A partial lunar eclipse occurs when the moon enters the earth's umbra partially, allowing some sunlight to reach the moon.Penumbral Lunar Eclipse: This happens when the moon enters the earth's penumbra, yet sunlight still enters the area since it is only partially shielded from the sun.

The Main Differences Between Solar Eclipses and Lunar Eclipse in Points

  • A solar eclipse occurs when the moon passes in front of the sun, obstructing the sun's light.
  • The Earth passes between the Moon and the Sun during a lunar eclipse, blocking out both celestial bodies and resulting in the eclipse.One solar eclipse takes place every 1.5 years. Lunar eclipses, on the other hand, happen twice a year more regularly.
  • A solar eclipse lasts for around 5 to 7 minutes and is only seen in a few locations.
  • A lunar eclipse, on the other hand, lasts about an hour and may be seen worldwide.
  • If the material is viewed with the naked eye, there is a significant chance of becoming blind because it damages the retina.
  • Because lunar eclipses do not harm the eyes, they may be seen without any eye protection.Every time the moon enters a new phase, a solar eclipse occurs. Additionally, the period of the full moon coincides with a lunar eclipse.
  • When the sun is blocked from view by the moon, it is referred to as a solar eclipse.
  • On the other hand, a lunar eclipse is an eclipse in which the moon looks dark because it is passing through the shadow of the earth.
  • The sun, moon, and earth are the three celestial bodies in the solar eclipse's location. The sun, earth, and moon are in their opposite positions during a lunar eclipse.
  • Every 18 months, or every 1.5 years, there is a solar eclipse.
  • Unlike the lunar eclipse, which occurs twice a year,Since a solar eclipse is an eclipse of the sun, it takes place during the day.
  • In contrast, because it is a lunar eclipse, it takes place at night.While the lunar eclipse takes place during the full moon, the solar eclipse happens during the new moon phase.
  • While a lunar eclipse lasts for a few hours, a solar eclipse only lasts for around 5 to 7 minutes.
  • Only a tiny region may see a solar eclipse, although a relatively broader area can see a lunar eclipse.
  • One runs the danger of losing vision if they see a solar eclipse directly with their bare eyes since it damages the retina.
  • Contrarily, it is okay to see a lunar eclipse with your naked eyes.

Solar and Lunar Eclipses: Some Interesting Points

A lunar eclipse can occur only when the moon is directly across from the sun in the sky, with the earth in between.Every full moon day over the course of a month, this position occurs. Due to the sun's imperfect alignment with the earth and moon and the moon's orbital inclination of around 5 degrees, we do not observe a lunar eclipse on every full moon day. Thus, a lunar eclipse only occurs twice a year.

As compared to the sun, the moon is 300 times closer to the Earth. Therefore, compared to the moon obstructing the sunlight, the likelihood of the earth blocking sunlight reaching the moon is higher.

This explains why there are fewer solar eclipses than lunar eclipses. Lunar eclipses last for a longer period of time than solar eclipses. While solar eclipses may only be observed from a small number of locations on Earth, lunar eclipses can be seen from numerous locations.

People have always been fascinated by eclipses, which have also long been the source of superstitions. Lunar and solar eclipses happen because of how the Earth and Moon are positioned in relation to the Sun.

Solar eclipses occur when the moon is between the Earth and the Sun, but lunar eclipses happen when the Earth is between the Sun and the Moon, keeping the Sun's rays from reaching the Moon.

Types of Lunar and Solar Eclipses

The eclipse can take many forms and cover different areas. Penumbral, partial, horizontal, and other forms of lunar eclipses are also possible. Penumbral eclipses take place when the moon accidentally enters the Earth's penumbral shadow, which is the planet's outer shadow. In this instance, certain parts of the moon look darker than others. A partial eclipse is seen when a portion of the moon passes into the umbra, the deepest region of the Earth's shadow where the sun's rays are completely blocked out. similar to how the moon is entirely hidden by the Earth and the umbra during a total eclipse. When the sun and the eclipsed moon are seen together at the intersection of dawn and sunset,

There are several types of solar eclipses as well. As the name indicates, a total solar eclipse occurs when the Moon totally blocks the Sun, leaving only a faint corona extending out from the eclipse; a partial eclipse occurs when the Moon just partially blocks the Sun. The Sun appears as a brilliant ring outside the darkening circle during an annular eclipse. A rare hybrid solar eclipse combines total and annular eclipses, and it can be seen differently depending on where you are on the planet.

Occurrence Frequency

Total eclipses do not happen very often since they depend on the precise alignment of the Sun, Earth, and Moon on the same plane for lunar and solar eclipses to occur. Different varieties of lunar eclipses often happen twice or more each year, but different types of solar eclipses typically happen three to four times per year.

Visibility and Safety

A lunar eclipse may be seen at night from anywhere. A horizontal eclipse occurs at the intersection of dawn and sunset and is only sometimes observable. In this situation, the moon appears orange. You may use your naked eye to observe the moon during an eclipse. Contrarily, a solar eclipse only lasts a few minutes and may be seen from some parts of the planet. During an eclipse, it is dangerous to gaze directly at the sun because it might harm the retina. Therefore, you should wear appropriate eye protection. The best way to view it is from a distance, as in a mirror.

Duration of a Solar vs. Lunar Eclipse

While a solar eclipse only lasts a few minutes, a lunar eclipse may last for many hours.

Conclusion

The Sun and the moon are celestial bodies. These are the main sources of light on the globe. The Sun is a scorching star with a high temperature. When the earth is lit, we refer to this as daylight. On the other hand, the Moon really orbits the Earth and is a satellite of that planet. The moon bounces the sun's light back toward Earth when it doesn't shine directly on it, such as at night.

An eclipse—complete or partial—occurs when one celestial body is blocked from view or covered by another. Solar and lunar eclipses have an impact on the Sun, Moon, and Earth.

References

  • Wikipedia - Lunar Eclipse
  • Moon Connection
  • Wikipedia - Solar Eclipse
  • Encylopedia Britannica
  • https://www.cambridge.org/il/files/1813/6681/7658/3577_Color_Ch_7_figs_2.pdf

Category


Cite this article

Use the citation below to add this article to your bibliography:


Styles:

×

MLA Style Citation


"Difference Between Lunar and Solar Eclipse." Diffzy.com, 2022. Sun. 02 Oct. 2022. <https://www.diffzy.com/article/difference-between-lunar-and-solar-eclipse-1022>.



Edited by
Diffzy


Share this article