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Filipino saw partial solar eclipse

Posted on: July 22, 2009

Filipino saw partial solar eclipse

By Anna Valmero
INQUIRER.net
First Posted 12:49:00 07/22/2009

Filed Under: Science & Technology, Natural Sciences, Science (general), Astronomy

MANILA, Philippines—Filipinos nationwide experienced a partial solar eclipse between 8:30 a.m. to around 11 a.m. Wednesday.

While those in China saw the moon cover the sun 100 percent, Manila experienced the maximum coverage for the country at 49 percent, said National Musemum’s Planetarium division acting curator Ma. Belen Pabunan.

“Of all the parts in the country, the maximum partial eclipse at 49 percent coverage is visible in Manila. In Cebu, Filipinos were able to see 36.7 percent maximum eclipse while in Davao, there is 27.6 percent maximum eclipse,” she said.

The Philippines was able to experience the partial solar eclipse of the Aros cycle—said to be the longest in the year—that only happens every 18 years, Pabunan said.

“This is the longest in the year, if not in the century, as the eclipse lasted 6 minutes and 39 seconds according to Nasa reports. As seen from our country, the moon partially covered the face of the sun—we expect to see this again after 18 years,” she said.

The first contact in Manila was at 8:33 a.m with the peak of the coverage of the sun by the moon at 9:43 a.m. and the fourth contact ending the eclipse at 11:01 a.m.

In Cebu, the first contact was seen at 8:48 a.m. with the maximum eclipse at 9:55 a.m. And the fourth contact at 11:08 a.m.

In Davao, the first contact was at 9:02 a.m., with the maximum eclipse at 10:04 a.m. And the fourth contact at 11:10 a.m.

The time differences for observing the first contact and maximum eclipse, said Pabunan, depends on the location of the places in the equator and Manila was in better position at 14 degrees 35 minutes north, 121 degree 00 minutes east than Davao and Cebu.

The Planetarium and the National Museum each installed viewing telescopes on Wednesday morning for students and interested public to see the celestial event.

Participants were given glasses with solar ray filters to watch the eclipse while others were content to see the reflection of the eclipse projected on white boards from the viewing refracting telescopes.

Another way to observe the eclipse safely is through watching its reflection over the water, because directly looking at the sun during an eclipse can cause blindness, said Pabunan.

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