Rising Crescent Sun

My friend Mark Kochte has done it again, this time capturing a spectacular time-lapse of this week’s partial solar eclipse (as seen from those of us on the East Coast). Click HD, go full screen, turn up your speakers, and enjoy:

Partial Solar Eclipse 2013 by Mark “Indy” Kochte

The sequence is brief, as was the eclipse itself, lasting no more than 10 about 40 minutes from sunrise. By this time, the Moon’s shadow was directly over the Atlantic Ocean. People on a ship at the right location were being treated to a spectacular show.

We need a bigger boat! Map of the 2013 solar eclipse courtesy Michael Zeiler
We need a bigger boat! Map of the 2013 solar eclipse courtesy Michael Zeiler

Meanwhile, back in Maryland, Mark wanted to get as “low” on the horizon as possible, so he made a predawn trip down to the Chesapeake Bay to capture the Sun as it rose over the water’s edge.

As you watch the video, you’ll see the moon moving westward away from the Sun, casting its shadow further west toward Africa.

It’s a beautiful video and, coupled with an understanding of where we stood on Earth at the time of eclipse, serves as a powerful reminder of just how fortunate we are to live on a planet with a satellite at just the right distance to completely eclipse the Sun for a few minutes every now and then.

Awesome Photo of the Solar Eclipse from International Space Station is NOT Real

Yesterday the world experienced a beautiful annular solar eclipse that was witnessed briefly by those of us in the Eastern United States. The Internet was immediately flooded with thousands of beautiful dramatic photos of the eclipse. Unfortunately, the one that seems to have garnered the most attention was not even a photograph at all:

"Eclipse" by artist A4size-ska
“Eclipse” by artist A4size-ska

This stuning piece was created by an artist who goes by the name A4size-ska on DeviantArt.com. It’s beautiful, but unfortunately there are some folks out there who took this image and passed it off as an actual photograph of yesterday’s eclipse as seen from the International Space Station. Sadly, this isn’t the first time this has happened and probably won’t be the last.

This is in no way meant to detract from A4size-ska’s amazing work. I do feel bad for him though as it’s pretty clear he’s not behind the attempts at fooling the public.

Now, if you want to see an example of what it really looked like from Earth, my friend Mark Kochte snapped this beautiful image of the partially eclipsed rising Sun from the Chesapeake Bay:

A crescent sunrise captured by Mark "Indy" Kochte.
Now that’s what I’m talking about! A crescent sunrise captured by Mark “Indy” Kochte.

The universe is a beautiful and amazing place, and worth appreciating in both fantasy and in reality. But it’s important to know which is which.