Re: Geostationary Solar Eclipse 9-APR-2005

From: Robert Holdsworth (
Date: Wed Mar 16 2005 - 04:35:09 EST

  • Next message: Greg Roberts: "Obs 14 March 2005"

    Thanks for this interesting heads up.  A useful and interesting introductory 
    The eclipse, which is actually a hybrid one (some parts annular, some 
    total),  starts southeast of New Zealand.
    Full details at and 
    there is a link there to a table which shows local circumstances of the 
    Hopefully I am still on topic as this may be useful in carrying out the 
    observations discussed!
    New Zealand
    ----- Original Message ----- 
    From: "Gerhard HOLTKAMP" <>
    To: <>
    Sent: Wednesday, March 16, 2005 7:08 AM
    Subject: Geostationary Solar Eclipse 9-APR-2005
    > Gerhard HOLTKAMP
    > Darmstadt, Germany
    > (this is my SeeSat  debut)
    > On 8-APR-2005 a total/annular eclipse is visible in the Pacific region. 
    > After
    > finishing there the Moon's shadow will sweep geostationary satellites over
    > the Atlantic an thus offer an indirect way to observe this eclipse from
    > Europe (and from Africa, South America and eastern parts of North 
    > America).
    > Best placed are the satellites between 33.9 West and 34.2 West which 
    > will
    > experience an eclipse lasting 34 minutes in the early morning hours of
    > 9-APR-2005 of which a few seconds (at 0:57 UT) are annular. During the 
    > first
    > 11 minutes of the eclipse the apparent brightness of the satellites would
    > drop by mag 1 but during the final 5 minutes before annularity the 
    > apparent
    > brightness drops by another 3.5 mag or so which should be easy to observe.
    > After that the brightness increases correspondingly. Satellites outside 
    > this
    > narrow band experience a partial eclipse. INTELSAT 903 stationed at 35.25
    > West seems to be the one best placed and should experience a total drop in
    > brightness by 3.5 mag at 1:01 UT. A few other satellites in the vicinity
    > should see a drop of between 2 to 3 mag.
    > The event coincides with a time when flares caused by the solar panels of
    > geostationary satellites can be seen from mid-latitudes. Observers from
    > Europe should see a flare at 2:40 UT on 9-APR-2005 of INTELSAT 903 right
    > after shadow egress. So without moving your telescope you can observe an
    > eclipse of the Sun, passage through the shadow of the Earth and flares - 
    > all
    > in less than two hours!
    > -------------------------------------------------------------------------
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