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									Solar Eclipses
Total Solar Eclipse of
   March 29, 2006

            Presented by
     Fred Espenak, NASA’s GSFC
Earth and Moon: New Moon
           Solar Eclipse Geometry 2
                                                 To Sun




The Moon orbits Earth                            To Sun
  once every 29.5 days with respect to the Sun
Earth and Moon: Solar Eclipse Geometry
           Solar Eclipse Geometry 3
                                                     To Sun






An eclipse of the Sun                                To Sun
   is only possible during the New Moon phase.
Earth and Moon: Solar Eclipse Path
           Solar Eclipse Geometry 4
                                                             To Sun





                     Earth                Path of Totality

During a total solar eclipse                                 To Sun
  the Moon’s shadow sweep across Earth.
           Partial Phases of a Total Solar Eclipse

                                 Every total eclipse begins with
                                 a series of partial phases which
                                 may last an hour or more.
                                 However, the total phase or
                                 “totality” never lasts more than
                                 7.5 minutes.

                                 This time series photo shows
                                 an entire total solar eclipse,
                                 from start to finish over a
                                 period of over two hours.

Credit: Dennis Mammana
“Diamond Ring” Effect Before Totality Begins

                                                                          Astronomy Picture of the Day - June 21, 2001
 Credit: Fred Espenak

       In the last seconds before totality begins, the remaining bit of
       Sun resembles a dazzling jewel as the ring-like corona appears.
          Total Solar Eclipse Video
 Video of the June 21, 2001 eclipse in Africa shows the
Diamond Ring Effect as the Sun vanishes behind the Moon
                   and Totality begins.
                       Glorious Solar Corona

                                                                       Astronomy Picture of the Day - Sept. 15, 1999
Credit: Fred Espenak

The sun’s glorious corona is composed of hot, rarified plasma with a
temperature of 1 to 2 million degrees Centigrade. It is only visible
during a total eclipse when the Moon hides the Sun’s brilliant disk.
Eerie Twilight During a Total Solar Eclipse

                                                                       Astronomy Picture of the Day - 2003 January 08
  Credit: Olivier Staiger

               During “totality” the landscape is bathed in an eerie
                 twilight. Bright stars and planets are visible.
        The solar
corona is revealed
during a total solar
                              Solar Eclipses
   •The corona is about
   one millionth times
   fainter than the disk of
   the Sun.
   •Similar to observing
   stars next to the Sun,
   the light from the disk
   must be blocked (by
   the moon, or by
   special occulter in the
   telescope) before we
   can see the solar
                                           Earth and Eclipse from Space

                                                                          Astronomy Picture of the Day - August 30, 1999
    Credit: Mir 27 Crew; Copyright: CNES

From space, the Moon’s umbra can be seen sweeping over Earth
during a total solar eclipse. Only observers within the shadow’s path
will see “totality” - outside the path a partial eclipse will be seen.
                        Total Solar Eclipse from Antarctica

                                                                         Astronomy Picture of the Day - 2003 December 08
Credit: Fred Bruenjes

                 It’s possible to see a total eclipse from anywhere on
                 Earth. This image was shot in Antarctica in 2003.
                           Partial Solar Eclipse
Partial eclipses are visible over a much larger part of Earth
than total eclipses. So they are seen by many more people.

                                                       Partial Eclipse of Oct. 14, 2004 (Hawaii)
    Credit: Fred Espenak
World Atlas of Solar Eclipse Paths
        Next Total Solar…..Head to China! Again!

Solar Eclipses: 2001-2020
Now let’s see this clip again!
          Links for the 2006 Total Solar Eclipse
NASA’s Sun-Earth Connection Website for 2006 Eclipse:
NASA’s Sun-Earth Connection & Exploratorium Live Webcast of 2006 Eclipse:

NASA’s 2006 Total Solar Eclipse Website:
NASA’s 2006 Eclipse Bulletin (Web Version):
NASA’s 2006 Eclipse Bulletin (PDF Version):

NASA’s Eclipse Home Page:
Lunar Eclipse
 Lunar eclipses happens
  when the Moon passes
  through the shadow of the
   – Everybody on the night side
     of Earth can see the lunar
 Lunar eclipses can be
  partial, penumbral, or
 Lunar eclipses can occur
  only at full moon.
Next Total Lunar Eclipse
AT least it’s not just
 Asia!! 12-21-2010
                      Eclipses: Summary
   The parties involved: Sun, Moon, and Earth
   Motion of the Moon around Earth:
    1. 29 ½ day revolution of the Moon around the Earth
    2. Tilt (~5º) of the lunar orbit (around the Earth) w.r.t. the Ecliptic plane
       (Earth’s orbital plane around the Sun)
    3. The precession of the lunar orbit w.r.t. Earth-Sun direction
   Solar eclipse happens when the Moon is between the Earth and the
   The size and distance of the Moon need to be just right for us to see
    total eclipse.
    –   The changing distance between the Earth and the Moon explains the
        occurrences of the total and ring solar eclipses.
    –   The changing distance between the Earth and the Sun, and the Earth and
        the Moon explains the difference in the duration of the solar eclipses.
   Lunar eclipse happens when Earth is between the Moon and the Sun.
                 Fun Eclipse Facts
• The moon’s shadow moves at 1700 km/hour (1,048
  mi/hr) .
• Maximum totality is ~7 ½ minutes.
• Every place on Earth will see a total solar eclipse
  about every 400 years.
• Solar Eclipses occur more frequently than lunar
  eclipses ( by 5:3).
• There must be at least two solar eclipses every year.
• There can be two solar eclipses in back to back
  months with a total lunar eclipse in between.
• This triple eclipse can occur twice during an eclipse
  year (1935, 2160).
• Seven eclipses is the maximum - 4 solar, 3 lunar
  (1982, 2485).

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