flash spectrum ...photography by Robert B Slobins
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Astronomy Photos: Annular Solar Eclipses

I do not go out of my way to observe annular eclipses unless the track is close by or if I have additional business to conduct at a particular location. They are more interesting than partial solar eclipses. As the moon transits the solar disk, ground illunination darkens, Venus or another bright planet may become visible, and pinhole images of the solar crescent or the ring (annulus) are visible on the ground. Depending on how much sun the moon covers, perhaps one can observe shadow bands and other phenonema associated with total solar eclipses. However, if that happens as it did in 1984, the central eclipse is very brief and one normally pays attention to the sky and not the ground.

Like partial solar eclipses, annular eclipses are more photogenic either near the horizon or through a layer of cooperative clouds or a hydrogen alpha filter. Otherwise one needs to protect his eyes and photographic equipment from the intense sunlight. Even though the sun is dimmer during annularity, what is not hidden is still the photosphere and perfectly capable of burning retinas.

Robert B Slobins 1970-2011   |   About   |   Sitemap   |   Contact