The first solar eclipse of 2010 occurs at January 15th. The annular eclipse will be visible from a 300-km wide track that traverses central Africa, Indian Ocean and eastern Asia. Partial phases of the eclipse are visible primarily from Africa, Asia and Indonesia. The central track encounters land in the Maldive Islands at 07:26 UT. The capital city Male experiences an annular phase lasting 10m:45s. Unfortunately for east Europe the partial eclipse will merely be visible. As for Greece the moon shadow will cover only the 1/5 of the solar visible surface and Greek astronomers will be able to observe the second half of the eclipse although the sun will be near east horizon (~1deg-10deg). Remember that you should never look directly at the sun unless you use a special filter but in this case when the sun is low at the horizon is safe enough.    

    An annular eclipse occurs when the Sun and Moon are exactly in line, but the apparent size of the Moon is smaller than that of the Sun. Hence the Sun appears as a very bright ring, or annulus, surrounding the outline of the Moon. The Moon's orbit around the Earth is an eclipse, as is the Earth's orbit around the Sun; the apparent sizes of the Sun and Moon therefore vary. The magnitude of an eclipse is the ratio of the apparent size of the Moon to the apparent size of the Sun during an eclipse. An eclipse when the Moon is near its closest distance from the Earth (i.e., near its perigee ) can be a total eclipse because the Moon will appear to be large enough to cover completely the Sun's bright disk, or photosphere; a total eclipse has a magnitude greater than 1. Conversely, an eclipse when the Moon is near its farthest distance from the Earth (i.e., near its apogee) can only be an annular eclipse because the Moon will appear to be slightly smaller than the Sun; the magnitude of an annular eclipse is less than 1. Slightly more solar eclipses are annular than total because, on average, the Moon lies too far from Earth to cover the Sun completely. A hybrid eclipse occurs when the magnitude of an eclipse transitions during the event from smaller than one to larger than one—or vice versa—so the eclipse appears to be total at some locations on Earth and annular at other locations. (Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/)


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