In Case you Missed it, Here are Some Amazing Pictures of Mars Hiding Behind the Moon

Last week gave us a celestial triple header, all in one night. The Moon was full and Mars was at opposition (at its closest point to Earth). But the pièce de résistance was when the Moon occulted or passed in front of Mars on the evening/morning of December 7th/8th. Our astrophotographer friends were out in full force to capture the event.

Our lead image comes from prolific amateur astronomer and photographer Alan Dyer, who observed the occultation from his home in Alberta, Canada, and created this composite view of the night’s activities. “While this composite makes it look like Mars was doing the moving,” Dyer explained on Flickr, “it was really the Moon that was passing in front of Mars. But for this sequence I set the telescope mount to track the Moon at its rate of motion against the background stars and Mars, to keep the Moon more or less stationary on the frame while Mars and the background sky passed behind it.”

Here are some more great views from around the world:

Andrew McCarthy never disappoints, and his high-resolution view from Arizona is incredible:

Here’s an amazingly crisp, clear view from Kerrie Ann Gardner in England:

See below for more great images and videos, compiled from Twitter and from Universe Today’s community on Flickr.

Mars and Moon close approach 12/7/22. Credit and copyright: Nancy Ricigliano, on Flickr.
Timelapse of Mars entering conjunction with the Moon, aligned on Moon Dec 8 02:33:05 – 02:37:27 UTC. Canon SX730 150 frames at 960mm EFL, 1/100, F 6.9, ISO 80. Credit and copyright: Farhill on Flickr.
Lunar Occultation of Mars: Mars just leaving the Moon’s Shadow. Shot w/ Celestron 127 SLT, Skywatcher EQM-35 Mount & Nikon D7500. 1200 frames over 2 stacks (one for each object), ISO 400, 1/30. Arranged in PIPP, stacked using AS!3 and post processed in Photoshop. Credit and copyright: doug0013 on Flickr.
A composite shot of the occultation of Mars by the Moon in the early hours of 8th December 2022. This image transposes shots of Moon and Mars taken with a Celestron Edge HD11 scope a few hours before the occultation. The images are placed on top of the actual shot to provide a more detailed luminance layer. Credit and copyright: Roger Hutchinson on Flickr.