RING OF FIRE: The annular eclipse
as seen from Caithness; Picture: BOBBY NELSON
Iceland's next annular eclipse
will occur in 2048, while the next total eclipse in the country will be in 2026.
Instead, it sits right in the middle of the solar disc surrounded by a halo of shining sunlight that astronomers call an annular eclipse
, like the one due on 3rd October.
An annular eclipse
occurs when the moon is farther from the Earth than during total eclipses.
However, what the earlier historians failed to consider was that it was instead an annular eclipse
, in which the moon passes directly in front of the sun, but is too far away to cover the disc completely, leading to the characteristic 'ring of fire' appearance.
aI plan to observe the December 26, 2019, annular eclipse
from India,a says Pasachoff.
This is a remarkable annular eclipse
. Only a part of the central cone passes over the Earth, in high northern latitudes.
Elements of prehistoric rock art and symbols on ancient artifacts--crescents imposed upon circles and black disks circumscribed with a bright ring--have sometimes been interpreted as graphic recollections of partial and annular eclipses
. While this is possible, practical observation suggests it is unlikely.
Contributing editor David Levy is a solar-eclipse veteran, having witnessed five total and two annular eclipses
The total solar eclipse of December 4, 2002, is called an annular eclipse
, the annular eclipse
of October 3, 2005, has an incorrect maximum duration, the lunar eclipse of May 16, 2003, is labeled as occurring on the 9th, and two annular eclipses
(February 7, 2008, and April 29, 2014) are omitted.
also beckoned, but from six trips undertaken, only three annulars were seen.
Similar annular eclipses
observed in 1984 (in the US) and 1999 (Australia) demonstrated that solar filters were required even though more than 99 percent of the Sun's disk was eclipsed.
On page 223 of the Supplement, the semi-duration of the total or annular phase is given as [L.sub.2]/n, where [L.sub.2] is the radius of the umbra (which term applies to both total and annular eclipses
) at a height Z above the fundamental plane, and n is the speed of the shadow (my emphasis), both reckoned in units of the Earth's equatorial radius.
are similar to total eclipses in that the moon lines up with the sun.
IN LAST MONTH'S COLUMN I wrote about some uncommon solar-eclipse observations made during annular eclipses
. This month I'll consider some unusual sightings of the Sun's corona made during total eclipses, but before and after totality.