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ALMA Photo Diary

Mar 14, 2017 Solar Eclipse Observation at the Residence of the NAOJ Chile Observatory Director

An annular solar eclipse took place in the morning of February 26 in Southern Chile. It was observed in Santiago from 9:20 am to 11:50 am as a partial solar eclipse with a large fraction covered by the moon. For this astronomical event, NAOJ invited members of the Chilean-Japanese Chamber of Commerce (Camara Chileno Japonesa de Comercio e Industria A.G.) and their families to observe a solar eclipse at the residence of the NAOJ Chile Observatory Director. A total of 33 participants (including 14 kids) were welcomed and attended by Director Seiichi Sakamoto and Yoshiharu Asagi, an associate professor at NAOJ.

In Santiago, it rarely rains from December through March, but unfortunately it rained in the predawn hours on that day. Just after the opening, a rainbow appeared and people burst into cheers because a rainbow can be rarely seen in Santiago, however other than that time, there was no sunshine during the talk by Director Sakamoto explaining the mechanism of solar eclipse and the latest solar research which started from 8:40 am.

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Photo 1. Lecture by Director Sakamoto

Around 10:00 am, since the sunshine intermittently broke through the clouds, participants were guided to a roof terrace to start observations using eclipse glasses and a telescope equipped with a sun-projection panel.

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Photo 2. Solar eclipse projected on a screen

At the opening of the event, the Director said, "there will be no moment of excitement with partial eclipse, unlike total eclipse or annular eclipse, because partial eclipse is a very slow process with no highlights as the obscured portion of the Sun is gradually getting larger and then back to smaller, and done. Then, let's take a posture of everyone together looking up to the Sun for a photograph (laugh)". However, there were moments of excitement when we could see the Sun through the clouds and all participants were looking up to the Sun unintentionally. This solar eclipse observation shared with many people will remain as an unforgettable experience not only for children but also their parents.

Photo. Observations with eclipse glasses.

Solar Eclipse Observation at the Residence of the NAOJ Chile Observatory Director

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