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  • PARTIAL SOLAR ECLIPSE ON JAN. 15

    Posted by Sawnews.tk on January 5, 2010

    Astronomy compels the soul to look upwards. Mysoreans are highly privileged to witness two eclipses this year.

    In 2010, two eclipses are clearly visible in India, one of the Sun and one of the Moon. On January 15 and June 26, it is possible to comprehend the genuine essence of astronomy and sky watching by witnessing ‘Partial Solar Eclipse’ and ‘Partial Lunar Eclipse’ respectively. Indians will witness the most exciting ‘Partial Solar Eclipse’ on Jan. 15, since it is visible from all parts of India.

    On January 15, ‘Annular Solar Eclipse’ will be visible in the region covering Southern tip of Chad, the Central African Republic, the northern Democratic Republic of Congo, Somalia,Uganda, Kenya, the Southern tip of India, northern Srilanka, the South eastern tip of Bangladesh, Myanmar and south eastern China. In India, the partial phase of the eclipse will be visible from the southern part and south eastern parts of India with nominal magnitude.

    The total duration of the Annular Solar eclipse is 6 hours 03 minutes. Generally, the eclipse will commence at 9.35 am and terminate by 3.38 pm. The greatest phase of the eclipse will eventuate at 12.37 pm. The magnitude of the partial eclipse of the sun is 0.919 and the maximum duration is 11m 04 s. The Partial Solar Eclipse at Mysore will begin at 11.12 am and terminate at 3.09 pm. The greatest phase of the eclipse will eventuate at 1.19 pm. The brightness factor or magnitude of the eclipse at Mysore will be 0.843.

    Some of the places in India are privileged to witness the most exciting form of Partial Solar Eclipse. In the southern tip of India namely Rameshwaram and Kanyakumari, people can see Annular Solar Eclipse. But, do not see the Solar Eclipse directly, leading to permanent damage of eyes. A Pinhole Camera is the simplest way to view an eclipse.

    In general, the partial phases are hazardous, but totality is both glorious and safe. In fact, we will not experience the full glory of totality unless we view it directly. To observe partial or total solar eclipse, it is safe to make use of solar filters. The key factor in safe solar filters, aside from their absorbing or reflecting sufficient levels of solar intensity, is that they do so evenly across the spectrum; that is, that they are of neutral density (ND). Solar Filters, made of aluminized Mylar, a coated plastic, are very popular and inexpensive. As long as these Mylar filters are undamaged, without creases or pinholes, they are safe to look through.

    Eclipse calculations specify the times of the contacts. First contact is the first meeting of the disks of the Moon and the Sun; the ingress of the Moon is noticeable to an observer looking through a filter with unaided eye a few seconds afterwards. Second contact is the moment when the Moon first completely covers the Solar Photosphere, the beginning of totality.

    Third contact is the first appearance of the Solar Photosphere at the end of totality. Fourth contact marks the departure of the lunar disk from the photosphere. The interval between first and the fourth contact is commonly three hours, and can be as long of four hours. During the partial phases, the crescent shape of the Sun is projected by fortuitous pinhole cameras in the canopy of tress onto the ground. A very safe way to view the partial phases is with a pinhole camera. Such a device is no more than a small hole, perhaps 2-5 mm across, in a piece of cardboard or aliminium foil. This small hole is held 0.5 – 1 m or so above a piece of paper or cardboard; observers look down at this second surface with the Sun behind them.

    — S.A. Mohan Krishna


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