The lone total solar eclipse for 2016 will occur on Wednesday, March 9, and will be seen across large parts of Indonesia and the Pacific Ocean.
A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes directly between the Earth and the Sun. As seen from Earth, the moon is just broad enough to cover the solar face, creating a breath-taking silver halo in an indigo sky. For many astronomers it is the ultimate experience.
The last total solar eclipse occurred on March 20, 2015, only visible from the Faroe Islands and Norway’s Arctic Svalbard archipelago.
The total eclipse will sweep across 12 of Indonesia’s 34 provinces, which stretches about 3,000 miles (5,000 kilometres) from east to west, before heading across the Pacific Ocean.
Partial eclipses will be visible in northern Australia and parts of Southeast Asia, including southern parts of the Philippines.
The moon will begin moving across the sun on Indonesia’s main western island of Sumatra at around 6:20 am (2320 GMT Tuesday), before the eclipse sweeps across Sulawesi and Borneo, then moves over the Malukus and heads out into the ocean.
Thousands of locals, tourists, and scientists are flocking to Indonesia to witness the event.
In cooperation with Slooh Community Observatory, Rappler will stream the eclipse live. Slooh is sending astronomer Paul Cox to Indonesia for the live stream. He will be accompanied by a team from the Institute of Astrophysics of the Canary Islands.
The livestream will start at 23:00 UTC Tuesday, March 8 / 7am GMT+8 Wednesday Manila time / 6am GMT+7 Jakarta time (for local times elsewhere, view this link).
Meanwhile, for eclipse watching, a warning: do not even attempt to look directly at the eclipse with your naked eyes – it is dangerous and can cause permanent eye damage, even blindness.
You can read more tips for safe eclipse viewing at the NASA Eclipse website. – With Agence France-Presse