Annual solar eclipse witnessed in Tamilnadu

Chennai: The annual solar eclipse today was witnessed by scores of people across Tamilnadu as it was visible in different parts of the State. Many temples in the state were closed in line with the rituals.

The last eclipse of the year was well visible to people living in various parts of the state including Chennai, Tiruchi, Udhagamandalam and Madurai even as reports reaching from Coimbatore and Erode said cloud cover in that region hampered visibility.

Avid nature enthusiasts keenly followed the eclipse even as experts warned against viewing the natural phenomenon with bare eyes and suggested specific instruments used for this purpose.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted: ”Like many Indians, I was enthusiastic about #solareclipse2019. Unfortunately, I could not see the Sun due to cloud cover but I did catch glimpses of the eclipse in Kozhikode and other parts on live stream. Also enriched my knowledge on the subject by interacting with experts.”

The annular eclipse is different from the solar eclipse. The latter occurs when the moon travels between the path of the sun and the earth and casts its shadow on the planet. As against it, the annular eclipse where the satellite blocks the sun thereby forms the ring.

”In general, the moon revolves around the earth in an elliptical orbit. However, when it is far away, the satellite will be at a distance of 3,57,000 km, it moves away from the earth. During the process, the apparent angular size of the moon will be diminished. At the time of maximum eclipse, it will not be able to cover the entire disk of the sun, leaving the edges visible which is called as annularity. This phenomenon is known as ‘ring of fire’,” explained Birla Planetarium Executive Director Soundararaja Perumal.

Eaborate arrangements were made at Birla Planetarium for people to watch the phenomenon.

NT Bureau