The 'ring of fire' during an annular solar eclipse. SUR
Rare solar eclipse not seen for 18 years due on Thursday, but will it be visible from Spain?

Rare solar eclipse not seen for 18 years due on Thursday, but will it be visible from Spain?

Astronomy ·

The hybrid or mixed type eclipse, also known as annular-total, will happen on 20 April when the Moon is furthest from Earth and will only be seen seven times this century

Almudena Nogués

Wednesday, 19 April 2023, 17:10


On Thursday 20 April there will be a very special eclipse. This is a mixed eclipse or annular-total that last occurred 18 years ago and will be the second of a total of seven this century.

The phenomenon occurs when the Moon is further away from the Earth and the satellite comes between our planet and the Sun. It will begin as an annular eclipse, change to total and then return to annular shortly before it ends.

They occur because the moon's orbit is elliptical and according to NASA they are usually longer and last up to ten minutes. In the process, what is known as a 'ring of fire' is glimpsed.

As the Spain's national geographic institute (IGN) explains on its website, the eclipse will begin at 2.34am Spanish mainland time in the Indian Ocean and will end at 7.59am Spanish time in the Pacific. However, as it is an eclipse of the Sun and will occur in the early hours of the morning, it will not be visible from Spain.

It will be seen in Southeast Asia, the Philippines and Oceania. The total duration of the phenomenon will be 325 minutes. According to IGN, the mixed eclipse will begin at a point in the Indian Ocean to the east of the Kerguelen Islands in the French Southern and Antarctic Lands. It will cross the Indian Ocean from south-west to north-east, making landfall in Western Australia, East Timor and Indonesia.

Although it will not be visible in Spain, astronomy lovers around the world will be able to follow it live on YouTube as the website will broadcast it from the Perth Observatory.

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