Why Moon Is Not Bathed In Earth-shine In Solar Eclipse?

A solar eclipse is a natural event that takes place on Earth when the Moon moves in its orbit between Earth and the Sun (this is also known as an occultation). It happens at New Moon, when the Sun and Moon are in conjunction with each other. If the Moon was only slightly closer to Earth, and orbited in the same plane and its orbit was circular, we would see eclipses each month. The lunar orbit is elliptical and tilted with respect to Earth’s orbit, so we can only see up to 5 eclipses per year. Depending on the geometry of the Sun, Moon and Earth, the Sun can be totally blocked, or it can be partially blocked.

Solar Eclipse.Image.jpg
Solar Eclipse.

Lunar Eclipse.

A lunar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes directly behind the Earth into its umbra (shadow). This can occur only when the Sun, Earth, and Moon are aligned (in “syzygy”) exactly, or very closely so, with the Earth in the middle. Hence, a lunar eclipse can only occur the night of a full moon. The type and length of an eclipse depend upon the Moon’s location relative to its orbital nodes.

On a full moon night you can very clearly see everything. Of course it is not as bright as the sunshine, but everything is very clearly visible. And if you were to view the earth from space on a full moon night it would not be dark. It would be illuminated by the moonshine and all the features of the earth would be clearly visible.

As there is ‘moonshine’ there must also be ‘earthshine’. Much of the earth is covered by water which is a good reflector of sunlight. In fact the scientists say ‘earthshine’ is much brighter than ‘moonshine’. And according to our understanding the earth is enormous in comparison to the size of the moon. So if the moonshine can completely illuminate this earth on a full moon night then the earthshine can completely illuminate the moon.

The ‘earthshine’ bombarding the moon at the time of a total solar eclipse would be at least ten times brighter than the moonshine on the earth on a full moon night.

If Western astronomers are correct the solar eclipse would be the prefect time to see the moon illuminated by earthshine. The shadow created which causes the solar eclipse on earth is, according to NASA, at most 167 miles wide. So if you were sitting on the moon during a solar eclipse you would see an extremely bright earth planet with a dark circle of only 167 miles wide. This is not enough to diminish the earthshine in any significant way. So  even though the sun is behind the moon, the full force of the sunshine is hitting the earth and reflecting off those shiny blue oceans and reflecting off the land also’

On checking up I found that earth shine is not much and hence not visible.

Science talks about Albedo and distances, but that does seem to me a lot of suppositions and wishful thinking.

Earthshine is a soft, faint glow on the shadowed part of the moon caused by the reflection of sunlight from the Earth.

Specifically, Earthshine happens when the light from the sun is reflected from the Earth’s surface, to the moon, and then back to our eyes. Because of this double reflection of light, Earthshine is many, many times dimmer than the direct light of the sun on the moon. Earthshine is even more faint because the moon’s “albedo” (a specific kind of reflectivity) is less than Earth’s. Even though this dim light is only a reflection it can still illuminate some features of the moon.

Earthshine can be best seen during the crescent phases (the 1-5 day period before or after a New Moon). During this time the sun is mostly behind the moon from our perspective and bathing the Earth in a lot of direct light that is reflected onto the shadowed parts of the moon.

Moons orbiting other planets can also experience this phenomenon, generally called “planetshine”

Albedo (/ælˈbd/), or reflection coefficient, derived from Latin albedo “whiteness” (or reflected sunlight) in turn from albus “white”, is thediffuse reflectivity or reflecting power of a surface.

It is the ratio of reflected radiation from the surface to incident radiation upon it. Its dimensionless nature lets it be expressed as a percentage and is measured on a scale from zero for no reflection of a perfectly black surface to 1 for perfect reflection of a white surface.

Albedo depends on the frequency of the radiation. When quoted unqualified, it usually refers to some appropriate average across the spectrum of visible light. In general, the albedo depends on the directional distribution of incident radiation, except for Lambertian surfaces, which scatter radiation in all directions according to a cosine function and therefore have an albedo that is independent of the incident distribution. In practice, a bidirectional reflectance distribution function (BRDF) may be required to accurately characterize the scattering properties of a surface, but albedo is very useful as a first approximation.

The albedo is an important concept in climatology, astronomy, and calculating reflectivity of surfaces in LEED sustainable-rating systems for buildings. The average overall albedo of Earth, its planetary albedo, is 30 to 35% because of cloud cover, but widely varies locally across the surface because of different geological and environmental features.[1]

The term was introduced into optics by Johann Heinrich Lambert in his 1760 work Photometria.

Will some one clarify in simple terms?

Or is this the same as what Science calls as Axioms, not to be questioned?







  1. this should happen 12 times a year. at every 30 degree angle. of the earth moon travel around the sun, and the moon is perpendicular to path of the earth around the sun, or in line with the earth, moon and sun.


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