This week, an exciting celestial event is set to occur – a hybrid solar eclipse, during which the moon will block out the sun. This type of eclipse is unique because it shifts from a total solar eclipse to an annular, or ring-shaped, eclipse as the shadow of the moon falls on the Earth.
The last hybrid solar eclipse occurred in 2013, and the next one will not take place until 2031. After that, astronomy enthusiasts will have to wait until March 23, 2164, to witness this extraordinary phenomenon again.
The eclipse will be visible from certain locations in the South Pacific, including western Australia, East Timor, and Indonesia, where the moon’s shadow will pass over beginning at 9:36 p.m. EDT on April 19 and ending at 2:59 a.m. EDT on April 20.
For those unable to witness the eclipse in person, there are numerous options for watching the event live online. Popular website TimeAndDate.com will be streaming the eclipse live on its YouTube channel starting at 9:30 p.m. EDT on April 19 (0130 GMT on April 20). The Gravity Discovery Centre and Observatory in Australia will also host a live stream of the eclipse on its YouTube channel at 10 p.m. EDT on April 19 (0200 GMT on April 20).
It’s important to note that viewers should never look directly at the sun during an eclipse or any other time without proper equipment. Doing so can cause permanent damage to the eyes. There are several ways to safely observe the eclipse, including using solar eclipse glasses or solar filters that meet international safety standards, or creating a pinhole camera at home.
For those interested in photographing the event, there are guides available on how to capture a solar eclipse, as well as recommendations for cameras and lenses best suited for astrophotography.
While this rare celestial event may only be visible from certain parts of the world, thanks to live streaming options, anyone can tune in and witness the magic of a hybrid solar eclipse.