From the ‘X-Files’ Dept: Green Flash Observed on Moon


Early one morning, an engineer at the European Southern Observatory (ESO) in Chile's Atacama Desert,used the Very Large Telescope to capture these rare and awesome images of the setting moon, complete with a rare green flash.

The European Space Agency regards Gerhard Hüdepohl's series of photographs as the best ever taken of the moon's rarely sighted green flash, created as the light from the moon hits the low, dense layers of its atmosphere. The green light is refracted at a greater angle than red. In exceptional conditions, the relative densities of the atmospheric layers underscore the separation between the green and red light, resulting in a green flash atop the setting orange and red moon.

Image credit: Gerhard Hüdepohl/ESO


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