On 25 October 2022 we were spectators of an unusual event: the positions of the Sun and the Moon allowed us to observe a partial eclipse of the Sun. The Sun and the Moon have almost the same angular diameter when they are observed form the Earth. A total solar eclipse occurs when the Moon is exactly between the Earth and the Sun and projects its shadow on the Earth. If an observer is placed on the path of such shadow the Sun results totally obscured by the Moon. On October 25th we observed a partial eclipse: the Moon and the Sun were not exactly aligned and therefore only a part of the Sun was obscured by the Moon.
In Catania the eclipse began at 09:36 UT, the maximum, with a darkening of the solar disk of up to about 13%, occurred around 10.31 UT. The event concluded at 11:27 UT.
The next partial solar eclipse visible from some cities of Italy is expected only in 2025.
The movie on the left represents the sequence of images of the solar disk acquired by the solar telescope of INAF - Catania Astrophysical Observatory. In the movie we show the solar chromosphere at a wavelength corresponding to the center of the Hα line (656.28 nm ± 0.25 nm). The raw images are recorded with a size of 2048 x 2048 pixels and a dynamic range of 16 bit.
Below we show the simulation of the event and the times of the partial solar eclipse calculated by P. Massimino for an observer located in Catania, precisely at:
Latitude N 37:30:12 and Longitude E 15:05:12
Start of partial solar eclipse: 09:36:05 UT, Sun height above the horizon: 38 degrees
Maximum: 10:31:02 UT, Sun height: 40 degrees, Sun azimuth: 176 degrees
End of partial solar eclipse: 11:26:44 UT, Sun height above the horizon: 39 degrees
Eclipse magnitude: 0.234
Passage of the Sun to the meridian: 10:43 UT
Image credits: Piero Massimino