Astronomy Blog

Share |

"Hybrid" Solar Eclipse at Sunrise Along the East Coast of the US

October 22, 2013; 6:56 AM ET

We certainly have had our fair share of astronomy events recently and the biggest event is right around the corner!!

NASA map of the upcoming solar eclipse

This is the most interesting eclipse of the year. It is a rare hybrid eclipse in which some sections of the path are annular (where the Moon does not completely block out the Sun) while other parts are total. This is due to the Moon's umbral shadow piercing the Earth's surface at some locations, but falls short of the planet along other sections of the path. This unusual setup is due to the curvature of Earth's surface. This eclipse is even more unique because the central path begins annular and ends total. Because hybrid eclipses occur near the vertex of the Moon's umbral/antumbral shadows, the central path is quite narrow.

This eclipse is visible from within a thin corridor, including the North Atlantic and equatorial Africa. A partial eclipse is seen within the much broader path of the Moon's penumbral shadow, which includes eastern North America, northern South America, southern Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The date for this event is Nov. 3.

The eclipse will begin in the North Atlantic about 1,000 km east of Jacksonville, Fla., as a four-second annular eclipse visible at sunrise. As the shadow races forward to the east, the narrow annular path rapidly shrinks to zero and the eclipse becomes total over a very small track. This all transpires within the first 15 seconds of the shadow's trajectory. For the remainder of the eclipse, a small path will remain total.

Very interesting map for the East Coast from Please check out this fantastic site for a variety of eclipse maps for this and other events.

Please check out this video of the path of totality as it heads easterly into Africa also from by clicking here. Very cool!

As the shadow travels over the Atlantic, just missing the island nation of Sao Tome and Principe off the coast of Africa, it will then cross the coast of Gabon north of Port-Gentil in the Wonga Wongue Reserve.

From here, the track begins curving to the northeast as it narrows and the duration of the total eclipse decreases.

In its final two and a half minutes, the lunar shadow races across southern Ethiopia before leaving Earth's surface in Somalia where a one-second total eclipse occurs at sunset.

You can leave your comments, as well as be part of a community where discussions on any astronomy subject, when you join AccuWeather's Astronomy Facebook Fanpage by clicking here. We are now approaching 34,000 likes on Facebook. Also find and follow us at @AccuAstronomy on twitter. Tell your friends about this site and blog and have them weigh in on some exciting issues. We encourage open discussion and will never criticize any idea, and no negative conversation will be allowed.

The experts on both Facebook and Twitter will keep you up to date on any astronomy-related subject. Please feel free to share your opinions.

And please keep the astronomy pictures coming. They have been simply amazing. Ask questions, share comments, share anything.

Here is yet another fantastic image from

Just another great example of the spectacular maps that are available from this site.

Even better, I will be seeing this event on the Outer Banks of North Carolina with the East Coast Star Party so I will be sharing a ton of pictures!!

The views expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of AccuWeather, Inc. or


Comments left here should adhere to the Community Guidelines. Profanity, personal attacks, and spam will not be tolerated.

More Astronomy Weather Blog

  • Strong Geomagnetic Storm Affecting Earth's Atmosphere

    October 7, 2015; 8:39 PM ET

    A powerful geomagnetic has sparked stunning aurora displays in the northern and southern hemispheres. The Draconid meteor shower peaks Thursday night. Also, the cresant moon joins the four planets visible in the early morning sky.

  • NASA Makes Huge Announcement Regarding Mars

    September 29, 2015; 3:12 PM ET

    It has been wondered for quite some time if Mars was ever able to support life and if it was in a state now to do so. On Monday, we came so much closer to answering that question, and perhaps maybe we even did.

  • The Sun Still Dazzles, Glance at Next Week's Big Eclipse

    September 19, 2015; 5:40 PM ET

    The sun gave us a show last week. And, it could lead to some aurora activity soon. Also, we look at what should be a very impressive eclipse of the Harvest Moon next weekend, which also happens to be the biggest supermoon of 2015.

  • Partial Solar Eclipse, Watch Live!

    September 11, 2015; 7:15 PM ET

    We will have a partial solar eclipse early Sunday. The event will affect southern Africa and Antartica. But, you can follow along live via Slooh Community Observatory. Plus check out more amazing aurora pictures from the most recent show.

About This Blog

Astronomy Blog
The astronomy blog, by Dave Samuhel, discusses stargazing, including how weather will affect viewing conditions of astronomical phenomenon.