How to make a realistic lunar eclipse?

I have a space enthusiast and am working on Earth atmospheric Rayleigh scattering. Also, I want to make lunar eclipse animation which should be realistic.

Reference video:

I don’t want to have red light lamp for making moon red but I want actual earth atmospheric scattering. How to do it?

I have seen scattering threads here on Blenderartists but nothing related to the eclipse.

Thanks in advance.

Sooo…I might have bad news for you. In general, 3D renderers do their best to approximate physical phenomena, but there is always going to be a trade-off between speed/artistic control/general purpose approaches and accuracy/realism/edge or corner case approaches. I don’t know your background, so I apologize if I’m saying something you already know.

Though Blender’s renderers use some light modelling algorithms based on physical phenomena, they don’t model light to wavelength accuracy (spectral rendering). That being said, there are renderers that do render to that degree of accuracy. I believe LuxCoreRender is one (free, open source, Maxwell (commercial, Mitsuba Renderer (free, research-oriented all can get you what you want, but those trade-offs still exist.

As a space enthusiast myself, I wish you luck and I’d love to see any results you are able to achieve!


I have seen (and done a while ago) a atmosphere rendering in LuxRender, more recently this has been done in both LuxCore and Cycles.

In LuxCore at least, you use a volume with asymmetric scattering, and bias it towards higher blue scattering and lower red scattering.

The rest is scene setup and scale.


Here’s a brief example, the brightness didn’t match the render but the concept is the same, just needs a dynamic brightness and some textures:

The earth is a ball with a volume around it:

Preview front, side, back
image image image

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Here’s the youtube video from what I was thinking about:

Not that this is a solution anytime soon, but I just came across it today, and I thought it would be of interest to you on the topic of realistic spectral rendering in Blender:

The really short version (that thread has about 700 posts in it) is that a dev (with other helper devs) has been working since 2018 to bring spectral rendering to Cycles, and has made great strides with surprisingly little speed sacrifice (I think one of the most recent tests put it 11% slower than the non-spectral version of Cycles)! Something to keep your eye on!

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Thank you. Let me get my hands on this.