Partial Solar Eclipse Visible in Indonesia Wows Spectators
Partial Solar Eclipse lasted only four minutes on Monday, but caused quite an uproar amongst those who have witnessed it in Indonesia. People were seen cheering and drumming in excitement. The eclipse was also marginally visible in parts of India, Southern Africa and Australia.
Dozens gathered in the western coastal town of Anyer to see the spectacle, which peaked at 4:40 p.m. and lasted for about four minutes.
Annular eclipses, which are considered far less important to astronomers than total eclipses of the sun, occur about 66 times a century and can only be viewed by people in the narrow band along its path.
The difference is whether the moon completely covers the sun; in an annular eclipse, the moon is slightly further out from the Earth as it is during a total eclipse, and hence doesn't quite completely block out the sun.
The last total eclipse of the sun was Aug. 1, 2008, and was visible in Canada, across northern Greenland, the Arctic, central Russia, Mongolia and China.
The next total eclipse will be July 22, 2009, and will be visible in India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Myanmar, China and some Japanese islands.