The last total lunar eclipse until December, 2010 will take place on Wednesday night. Weather permitting, the total eclipse can be seen from North and South America. People in Europe and Africa will be able to see it just before dawn on Thursday. Eastern North Carolina should have only high thin clouds during the total eclipse, which will occur between 10 and 11 pm. A total lunar eclipse occurs when the full moon passes into Earth's shadow and is blocked from the sun's rays that normally illuminate it. During an eclipse, the sun, Earth and moon line up, leaving a darkened moon visible to observers on the night side of the planet. Unlike solar eclipses, which require protective eye wear, lunar eclipses are safe to view with the naked eye.