Monday, July 20, 2009

A total solar eclipse will take place on Wednesday, July 22, 2009 but it will occur in a narrow path. The second in a series of three eclipses within a month's cycle - first was the lunar eclipse on July 7, now a solar eclipse on July 22 and then another lunar eclipse on August 6 - and said to be the longest total solar eclipse that will occur in the 21st century and it will not be surpassed in duration until June 13, 2132.

It will begin in India
and crosses through Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Myanmar, Central China, the Pacific Ocean, Ryukyu Islands, Marshall Islands and Kiribati. In the Philippines, however, the event will be observed as a partial solar eclipse, which will also include most of eastern Asia, Indonesia, and the Pacific Ocean.

PAGASA (Philippines Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration) even supplied a table of local eclipse occurrences here in the country on the said date.

click to enlarge

PAGASA also warns the public about viewing the solar eclipse directly without proper eye safety as this might cause damage to the retina of the eye. Even the use of unconventional methods like viewing with x-ray films, sunglasses, smoked glass & photographic films and negatives, which are used in various countries to view eclipses, are also dangerous. The safest method is indirect viewing, like projecting the image with a pinhole camera. If you're an astronomy enthusiast, you can invest on some solar filters which is said to be 100% safe.

I am even contemplating about writing a note to my son's teacher to let him and his classmates (6 of them) watch the solar eclipse, hmm... do you think it's appropriate?

*** in reference to PAGASA and Wikipedia
*** photo courtesy of Stalking Minds


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