Eclipses: English version - Total Solar Eclipse, June 21, 2001, Zambia


2001 JUNE 21
THE FIRST TOTAL SOLAR ECLIPSE OF NEW MILLENNIUM
ZAMBIA, NORTH OF LUSAKA AT THE CENTER LINE

 

 

ECLIPSE OBSERVATION BY ALBERTO AIOSA

 

  This first total solar eclipse of new millennium crosses the southern Atlantic ocean north of Saint Helena island and the Southern Africa continent with a totality path up to 200 km width at a speed up to 1000 km/h and more, to end in the Indian Ocean. On the African continent, totality started in Angola at 12:39 GMT then crosses Zambia, Zimbabwe and Mozambique and south of Madagascar. 
  June is quite a favourable period being during the tropical winter and dry season with good probability of clear sky especially on the highlands. Angola has the best weather forecast but the still endemic civil war discounts a large influx of tourists, Zambia is the best alternative with his capital city, Lusaka, the only big town within the path of totality. In Zambia eclipse day has been declared national holiday as historical memories are associated with this phenomenon. During an earlier solar eclipse, in 1835, the Ngoni tribe (one of the over 70 different tribes in Zambia) crossed the Zambesi River when they fled the warriors of the Zulu king Shaka. So this eclipse provides the opportunity for local celebrations. Zambia, two times the size of Italy and a population of 10 million, has a large number of national parks with a spectacular wildlife almost ignored by western tourists. 
  The country is expecting 20000 foreign visitors for this occasion. 

  Karubwe Farm, located at center line 40 km north of Lusaka, has been chosen as observation site. The geographical co-ordinates of the site measured by GPS are the following: 

  Latitude: 15° 08' 09" S 
  Longitude: 28° 27' 26" E 

  The eclipse local times are approximately the same as for Lusaka International Airport: 

  Beginning of partial eclipse (B.P.E.): 13:42 
  Beginning of total eclipse (B.T.E.): 15:10 
  End of total eclipse (E.T.E.): 15:14 
  End of partial eclipse (E.P.E.): 16:28 

  and the duration of totality is 3' 35"

PHOTOGRAPHIC EQUIPMENT

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  • Camera CANON EOS 500 N
  • Tele EF 300 mm f/4 LIS
  • CANON Extender EF 2X
  • Remote Switch RS -60E3
  • Tripod and Micrometric Head
  • Solar filters during the partial phases:
    alluminized mylar (white),
    metallic-coated glass (red).
  • Film Kodak Gold 100 ISO.


FULL SUN
AND SUN SPOTS

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FIRST PARTIAL PHASE

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TOTALITY PHASE

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  The most conspicuous celetial object seen in the sky during the totality was the planet Jupiter just 5° west of the Sun with a magnitudo of -1.5. 

SECOND PARTIAL PHASE

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alberto aiosa is member of amateur astronomers group  Hipparcos of Rome, Italy.

 


 


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