On Nov. 22, 2014 from 5:29 to 6:04 p.m. EST., the moon partially obscured the view of the sun from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory. This phenomenon, which is called a lunar transit, could only be seen from SDO's point of view.
In 2014, SDO captured four such transits -- including its longest ever recorded, which occurred on Jan. 30, and lasted two and a half hours.
SDO imagery during a lunar transit always shows a crisp horizon on the moon -- a reflection of the fact that the moon has no atmosphere around it to distort the light from the sun. The horizon is so clear in these images that mountains and valleys in the terrain can be seen.
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission.