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Update on MYSTERY Planetary eclipse

must click on links to see pics.

Problem SOLVED: Another Unscheduled Solar Eclipse from perspective of the SDO

Problem Solved: Another Unscheduled Solar Eclipse from perspective of the SDO (Solar Dynamics Observatory).

This Anomaly has been bugging me all day. I tried to draw the Sun, Moon and SDO satellite to scale, and could not find its exact location; BUT I found the answer in a blog about the SDO.

I Apologize for causing any unnecessary concern in yesterday’s post – It did look like a very serious problem; but I sure learned from it.

From the position of the earth it would be great cause for concern, but the SDO orbit is 22,000 miles from earth. I was lucky to find a blog describing a similar event that happened on new moon of OCT 7, 2010 that showed a partial eclipse from the perspective of the SDO.

This is from the Blog:

Wow! This phenomenal shot was taken on October 7, 2010, as the new Moon slipped between the Sun and the observatory. SDO is in Earth orbit, circling our planet 36,000 km (22,000 miles) up (technically, that’s the distance from the Earth’s center). The orbit is tilted so the Earth itself only rarely gets in the observatory’s way as it watches the Sun day in and day out. But every now again, when the celestial objects literally align, the Moon can block the view. From the Earth, the Moon was new, meaning it was near the Sun but not blocking it. But from SDO’s point of view the geometry was just right to get this partial eclipse (technically called a transit). I drew a rough diagram to give you an idea of how this worked:

Here is a diagram of how this partial solar eclipse fooled me (and many others)


This isn’t to scale, but should help. You can see SDO and its tilted orbit (seen edge-on, so it looks like a line), allowing it to view the Sun without the Earth’s big face getting in the way (from SDO’s point of the view, the Earth is about 25° across, the apparent size of a dinner plate held at arm’s length). The Moon’s orbit is tilted as well, and in this case, it happened to be in the way of SDO’s line of sight to the Sun. The shot itself is amazing. It’s false color: the camera was actually viewing the Sun in the far ultraviolet, where the solar magnetic field’s churning turmoil can be seen plainly. You can see gigantic loops of hot plasma arcing up over the surface of the Sun and then plunging back down. On the left is a spectacular example of that… mind you, the Sun’s disk is about 1.4 million km across — 860,000 miles. That loop is well over 200,000 km (120,000 miles) high! The Earth would be a dot compared to that.

Here’s this blog site that solved the mystery unscheduled solar eclipse:


It was not from Earth’s perspective. The Partial Solar Eclipse of December 6, 2010 was from the perspective of the SDO and just at the right time and angle and far enough away from the earth to cause this great capture:


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