New Delhi , June 20 : An annular solar eclipse will occur on Sunday which will be visible in many parts of the world including India.
A solar eclipse occurs when the moon, earth and sun come in a straight line, with the moon between the earth and the sun.
However, unlike a full solar eclipse when the sun is entirely covered by the moon for a brief period, during the annular eclipse, the angular diameter of the moon falls short of that of the sun and it fails to cover up the latter completely. As a result a ring of the sun’s disk remains visible around the moon. Hence, an annular solar eclipse is popularly known as ‘ring of fire’.
A few places in northern India will be able to witness this ‘ring of fire’ while the rest of the country will observe the event partially.
Depending on the location of a person from the central path, the eclipse, mostly in partial phase, will be visible between 9:56 AM to 2:29 PM, a press release from Planetary Society, India, said .
The ‘ring of fire’ will be visible in to people in Rajasthan, Haryana and Uttarakhand.
The path of annular solar eclipse will start near Gharsana in Rajasthan around 10:12 AM. However, the phase of annularity will be only for one minute – it will begin around 11:49 am and end at 11:50 am, according to Debi Prasad Duari, director of Kolkata-based M P Birla Planetarium Debi Prasad Duari, as per a PTI report.
The PTI report added that the ring of fire will be visible for that one minute from places such as Suratgarh and Anupgarh in Rajasthan, Sirsa, Ratia and Kurukshetra in Haryana, and Dehradun, Chamba, Chamoli and Joshimath in Uttarakhand.
But even if you aren’t among the lucky ones who will get to witness the ‘ring of fire’, you can still observe a partial solar eclipse of a different magnitude in places including Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Hyderabad and New Delhi.
In Kolkata, the partial eclipse will begin at 10:46 am and end at 2:17 pm, while the timing will be from 10:20 am to 1:48 pm in New Delhi, from 10 am to 1:27 pm in Mumbai, from 10:22 am to 1:41 pm in Chennai and between 10.13 am and 1.31 pm in Bengaluru.
Obscuration of the sun by the moon at the time of the greatest phase of partial eclipse will be around 94 per cent in Delhi, 80 per cent in Guwahati, 78 per cent in Patna, 75 per cent in Silchar, 66 per cent in Kolkata, 62 per cent in Mumbai, 37 per cent in Bangalore, 34 per cent in Chennai, 28 per cent in Port Blair.
The eclipse will be annular in some parts of the country, where sky gazers will get an opportunity to observe the “ring of fire” during the phenomenon, an official said on Monday. However, for most parts of the country, the eclipse will be partial.
The path of the annular solar eclipse will start near Gharsana in Rajasthan around 10:12 am IST and the phase of annularity will begin around 11:49 am IST and end at 11:50 am IST, Director of the M P Birla Planetarium Debi Prasad Duari told PTI.
The ring of fire will be visible for that one minute from places such as Suratgarh and Anupgarh in Rajasthan, Sirsa, Ratia and Kurukshetra in Haryana, and Dehradun, Chamba, Chamoli and Joshimath in Uttarakhand. According to the Nehru Planetarium, the solar eclipse will first be visible in Bhuj, Gujarat starting at 9:58 am IST and will be seen ending last in Dibrugarh, Assam at 2:29 pm IST.
In Kolkata, the partial eclipse will begin at 10.46 am IST and end at 2.17 pm IST, while the timing will be from 10.20 am IST to 1.48 pm IST in New Delhi, from 10.00 am IST to 1:27 pm IST in Mumbai, from 10.22 am IST to 1.41 pm IST in Chennai and between 10.13 am IST and 1.31 pm IST in Bengaluru.
On June 21, the annular eclipse will first start for the people of Congo in Africa and progress through South Sudan, Ethiopia, Yemen, Oman, Saudi Arabia, the Indian Ocean and Pakistan, before entering India over Rajasthan. It will then move on to Tibet, China, Taiwan, before ending at the middle of the Pacific Ocean.
This will be the last eclipse to be seen from India for the next 28 months as the next eclipse will be seen in India on October 25 next.
For people living in parts of the country where the eclipse is visible, you can go outside and watch the annual solar eclipse. However, it is important to maintain social distance due to the COVID-19 pandemic and have proper eye protection because looking directly at the Sun can cause permanent damage to the eye’s retina. If you aren’t in the areas where the eclipse is visible or you don’t want to go out, you can watch the phenomenon online.
Make sure not to observe the solar eclipse with the naked eye. It must be projected on to a screen for watching or one must be wearing dark glasses.
( With PTI inputs )