Image: Proba-2 captures partial solar eclipse

Image: Proba-2 captures partial solar eclipse
ESA/Royal Observatory of Belgium

ESA's Sun-watching Proba-2 satellite experienced three partial solar eclipses on 13 September 2015. On Earth, a single partial eclipse occurred over South Africa, the southern Indian Ocean and Antarctica.

During a , the Moon moves in front of the Sun as seen from Earth, their alignment and separation such that the Moon, situated much closer to Earth, appears large enough to block out the light from the much more distant Sun.

But, like yesterday, sometimes the alignment is such that the Moon only partially covers the Sun's disc.

Meanwhile, ESA's Proba-2 orbits Earth about 14.5 times per day, dipping in and out of the Moon's shadow around the time of a solar eclipse. The constant change in viewing angle of Proba-2 meant that the satellite passed through the shadow three times during the eclipse yesterday.

One of these partial eclipses is presented here – it was captured at 06:32 GMT on 13 September – but all three, along with a fourth passage of the Moon close to the edge of the Sun, can be seen in this movie.

The image was taken with Proba-2's SWAP imager, which views the at extreme ultraviolet wavelengths to capture the turbulent surface of the Sun and its swirling corona – a glimpse of which can be seen in the background.

Citation: Image: Proba-2 captures partial solar eclipse (2015, September 16) retrieved 14 April 2024 from
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.

Explore further

Video: NASA's SDO catches a double photobomb


Feedback to editors