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Annular solar eclipse

April 29, 2014 - SPACE

Throngs of enthusiasts usually descend on locations where solar eclipse viewing is best, but penguins might be the only audience for the annular solar eclipse of 29 April 2014; it will be visible from eastern Antarctica.

If humans come to the South Pole for the show, the draw will be the rarity of this eclipse. It is classified as a non-central annular eclipse. The zone of annularity will appear as a small D-shaped region, not the brilliant halo of sunlight visible around the Moon, the phenomenon associated with regular annular eclipses.

Out of the 3,956 annular eclipses occurring during the 5,000-year period (-2000 to +3000), according to the NASA eclipse web, only 68 of them were/are the non-central kind.

Annular solar eclipse of April 29 (Fred Espenak NASA)

Date written/update: 2013-11-20