Sky gazers will witness a rare “ring of fire” as the Solar Eclipse 2021 will occur on June 10 and this one will be a bigger spectacle than the last month’s “Super Flower Blood Moon”.
What is annular solar eclipse?
When the moon completely blocks sunlight as it passes between the earth and the sun, a total solar eclipse takes place. However, during this phenomenon, the sun is not completely covered by the moon, as the earth’s natural satellite passes by and a bright solar ring appears.
As per NASA, there are certain conditions only under which an annual solar eclipse can take place. The moon must be farther from our planet Earth in its elliptical orbit, it must be in its first lunar phase and appear smaller as compared to what it would normally be.
Only under these conditions, the moon looks smaller. Hence, it cannot block the sun completely and form a “ring of fire” or “ring of light.”
“As the pair ascends higher in the sky, the moon’s silhouette gradually shifts from the sun to the left, making the sun more visible until the end of the eclipse,” NASA said.
Solar Eclipse 2021: How and where to observe
The new moon will form on June 10 and will eclipse the sun at 6:53 am ET. People will need to watch to east, in order to spot it.
People living in parts of Canada, Greenland, the Arctic Ocean, and Siberia will be able to see the narrow path of the Solar Eclipse 2021. On the other hand, people who are in parts of northeastern North America, Greenland, northern Europe, and northern Asia will get a chance to view the phenomenon partially.
The moon will block around 80 per cent of the left side of the sun when they both rise together at 5:42 am in the east-northeast as seen from the Washington, DC area. According to NASA, the sun will appear like a sickle during this time.
“From any point along this ring-shaped solar eclipse path, the middle or ring-shaped phase or ‘ring of fire’ of the solar eclipse takes a maximum of 3 minutes 51 seconds,” explains EarthSky.
The celestial event will come to an end around 6:29 pm ET.
As we all know, special glasses are required to view the solar eclipse in order to provide protection to your eyes. If you view the sun through naked eyes, it can be dangerous and can even cause damage to the eyes.
You can watch a live broadcast of the rare celestial phenomenon, click here.
The partial eclipse will begin around 11:42 am IST. The annular eclipse will appear to occur from 3:30 pm and will continue till 4:52 pm.
‘Death Star in front of the sun’
Jackie Faherty, an astrophysicist at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City, said it will not appear as the regular sun. “It is not going to look like your regular sun,” she told space.com.
According to Faherty Thursday’s partial eclipse will look like “the ‘Death Star’ is in front of the sun as it’s rising,” she said, as she referred to the moon-size space weapon from “Star Wars.”
“From our perspective, it covers a lot of it. It covers enough of it that you end up with this effect that there will be a black dot with the rest of the sun shining around it, which ends up looking like a ring of fire,” space.com quoted her as saying.
“This one’s kind of cool,” Faherty said, “because the way the shadow of the moon is going to pass over the Earth, it’s going to pass over the North Pole.”
“Most people might not realize that these eclipses chase each other,” she said. “You get lunar eclipses and solar eclipses back to back. And the reason for that is that the moon going around the Earth, it’s not perfectly circular, but a near-perfectly circular orbit when it’s lined up.
“So, it’s kind of off the plane of the Earth-sun system by about five degrees, which is why we don’t get total lunar and total solar eclipses every month. But when you do get a total lunar eclipse, you’ve got a total solar eclipse on its way to because it means that the system has come into alignment.”