Total Solar Eclipse, 4 December
Unfortunately, the total eclipse will be observed only in a few parts of mostly remote Australia (Ceduna, 'Wirraminna' and Purple Downs in SA, see Table I), but most coastal cities will see a partial eclipse with WA, NT, SA and VIC sites seeing the most coverage of the sun (about 90-80%) See Table II. While there is a wealth of information about the total aspect of the eclipse, there is less information about what those places that experience a partial eclipse will see (or when), this page is aimed at them. More details about the total eclipse can be found in the links section.
The path of the eclipse can be seen here. The blue line shows the path of totality, lines representing where 80% of the sun is covered by the moon are marked 80%. Also shown are the lines where the sun sets beore the eclipse, and where the sun sets at mid eclipse. .
The best way to observe this event is by making a pinhole in a stiff square of cardboard and projecting the image of the Sun onto a flat surface. You are basically making a simple pinhole camera, which will reveal the changes to the Suns outline quite satisfactorily. A card with a 1 mm hole should be projected onto a surface (eg white paper, or a white wall) about 20 cm away, a 5 mm hole shold be projected onto a surface 1 to 1.5 meters away.
Acceptable filters are specially coated filters that may be purchased from Astronomy suppliers, or number 14 welders filters. Again, these should be used with special care so as not to expose your eyes directly to the sun by accident.
Remember, except during totality, do NOT look directly at the Sun, as irrepairable eye damage or blindness can occur.
|Town||State||Time Zone||First Contact||Mid eclipse||Last contact|
|Purple Downs||SA||ACST||17.42||18.40||19.13 (sunset)|
|City||State||Time Zone||First Contact||Mid Eclipse||% Sun Covered||Last Contact|
|Alice Springs||NT||ACST||17.48||18.46||78%||19.10 (sunset)|
|Brisbane||QLD||AEST||18.17||18.22||10%||18.32 (sun sets)|
Remember, the times above are not corrected for daylight saving. Where times are given with (sunset), the sun sets before the eclipse is finished. In Brisbane and Sydney, the sun sets before mid-eclipse, so "mid" times are for 10 minutes before sunset. The cities listed in Table II are not the only places the eclipse can be seen, but will give you a general idea of the start/finish time in your area.
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Created: Monday, 25 November 2002, 11:22:32
Last Updated: Saturday, 30 November 2002, 11:22:32