India witnesses longest solar eclipse of the millennium

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New Delhi/ Hyderabad, Jan 15 (ANI): The astronomy lovers got the opportunity to witness the longest solar eclipse of the millennium on Friday, as the eclipse was partially visible in most parts of the country.

The eclipse appeared as an annular one in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu for a stretch of around 300 kilometres.

Delhi's Nehru Planetarium had made special arrangements to witness the solar eclipse in spite of a cloudy sky.

Senior Planetarium Engineer, OP Gupta said, " Everyone knows that there will be a solar eclipse which is annular. This means that the moon's shadow covers the sun, which makes the sun look like an annulus, or a ring."

"But in Delhi, it will only be partially visible, a visibility rate of 53%," added Gupta.

The scene was almost similar in Hyderabad, where the people were waiting patiently to witness the spectacle.

RV Rao, a spectator in Hyderabad said, "Given a chance, we can see the different stages of this eclipse, it will be rewarding for us having come over here."

The first solar eclipse of the year witnessed today had a magnitude of 0.9190.

A solar eclipse occurs when the moon passes between the sun and the earth, obscuring the sight of the sun either partially or completely.

An annular solar eclipse is rare and occurs when the moon's shadow covers the sun, causing the sun to look like a ring.

The next longest annular solar eclipse is predicted in 3043. (ANI)

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