Partial solar eclipse observed in India

January 26th, 2009 - 5:56 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Jan 26 (IANS) The first solar eclipse of the year was partially visible in some parts of India and observed by various people Monday afternoon.The eclipse started at 2.15 p.m. and ended at 4.20 p.m.

“The eclipse was visible only from southern parts of India, eastern coast, most of northeast India, Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Lakshadweep,” Nehru Planetarium director N. Rathnasree told IANS here.

She said people in north and west India couldn’t see the celestial activity.

At 3.10 p.m. the eclipse was visible with maximum clarity. It moved over Chennai and other southern regions at around 2.28 p.m.

Around 50 people gathered at the Nehru Planetarium at Teen Murti Bhawan for discussions on the solar eclipse. The eclipse progress was webcast live on a large screen from Java, Indonesia, where the eclipse was central, courtesy NGO Science Popularisation Association for Communicators and Educators (SPACE).

The origin of the eclipse was in South Atlantic Ocean in South Africa where the moon’s shadow first touched the earth, Rathnasree said. The eclipse ended when the moon’s shadow finally left the earth in the South China Sea.

As it is harmful to view the sun during an eclipse with naked eyes it was advised across regions to watch the solar eclipse using proper eye gadgets and telescope.

The next solar eclipse will occur July 22 this year and will be the century’s longest duration solar eclipse.

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