During 2023, there are two lunar eclipses that will be possible to observe: the first that occurred on May 5—the penumbral type, where the penumbra created by the Earth’s shadow is projected onto the Moon—and was possible to see in Africa, Asia and Australia; The second eclipse of the Moon will take place on October 28, and it will be of a partial type where only a part of the Moon will be hidden. This last eclipse of 2023 will be visible from the Americas (including Chile), Europe, Africa, most parts of Asia and Oceania.
Astronomical Calendar 2023: Wolf micromoon, eclipse and more
As far as solar eclipses are concerned, the first one to be seen in 2023 was on April 20, and it was hybrid type where the sun was completely hidden and then the solar ring could be seen with Bailey’s beads, As the incident was going on. It was barely visible in a strip between the Indian and Pacific oceans.
Annular eclipses form Bailey’s pearls, which are the incidence of filtered light over the solar ring between lunar reliefs.
The next (annular) solar eclipse of the year will occur on Saturday, October 14. Its core will begin in the North Pacific Ocean south of Alaska, pass through the western United States, Mexico, Central America, Colombia and northern Brazil, and end in the equatorial Atlantic off the coast of northeastern Brazil. The penumbra covers a large part of the Americas, from Canada in the north to Chile in the north and Argentina in the south.
Features of different types of eclipses
An eclipse between the Moon, the Earth and the Sun occurs when one of the three bodies hides behind the other. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon stands between the light coming from the Sun and Earth, casting a shadow on the planet’s surface. A lunar eclipse occurs when the Earth comes between the Sun and the natural satellite.
The shadow of an eclipse produces an umbra (maximum darkening) and a penumbra (partial darkening). On the other hand, there are lunar eclipses, which occur when the Earth covers the sunlight that illuminates the lunar surface, and also produces shadows and penumbra.
Types of solar eclipse
A solar eclipse can occur partially, when not all sunlight is blocked, or total, when light is completely blocked.
The hybrid eclipse is changing from total to annular, showing Bailey’s pearls due to lunar relief. Source: Nat Geo.
Despite the fact that the size of the Moon is much smaller than that of the Sun, its position in space with respect to our planet renders these celestial bodies of similar size, which makes total eclipses of the Sun possible.
When the ratio is small, ie when the Moon appears smaller than the Sun to our eyes, eclipses can show the edges of the solar atmosphere. Sometimes a type of ring can also be formed, which is called an annular eclipse of the Sun.
Hybrid eclipses are rare. The next one will occur on November 14, 2031 and will not repeat itself until 2164.
There are also hybrid eclipses, such as the one seen in April this year. According to NASA, the event is characterized by a transition between two types of solar eclipses, annular plus total, as the Moon’s shadow moves across Earth’s surface. This is how the total obscuration of the Sun was observed and then the solar ring around the Moon.