A total lunar eclipse will occur on Sunday evening, and as a full moon plunges into the Earth's dark inner shadow, its surface will turn a dark, rusty red.
The view from the San Francisco Bay Area will be unusual as the May 15 eclipse begins at 6:32 p.m., before the moon rises in the east at 8:04 p.m., said Gerald McKeegan, adjunct astronomer with the Chabot Space & Science Center in Oakland.
"So when the moon rises, it already will be partially in the Earth's umbra shadow, exhibiting that familiar rusty red color," McKeegan wrote in an email.
A lunar eclipse unfolds when the sun, Earth and moon align, and the moon passes into the Earth's shadow.
When the moon passes fully into the umbra shadow, it turns a glowing red color and astronomers call it a total lunar eclipse