Total Solar Eclipse
August 1 2008
Ob Sea, south of Novosibirsk, Siberia
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Total Solar Eclipse 2008: For the first time since early 2006, the moon occults the sun in a total eclipse on August 1 2008. These photos were taken on the shores of the Ob Sea (Ob Reservoir?), some 20 or so miles south of the Siberia, Russia city of Novosibirsk. Duration of totality was 2 m 18 s and local time of totality was 5:45pm, from this location. From start to finish, the eclipse lasted 2 hr 4 min. Above, as well as the vertical shot below, are digital multiple exposures of the event. The camera was programmed to take one photo every five minutes for the duration of the eclipse, with the solar filter coming off at totality. Below are a few digital composites of the event from my telephoto-mounted camera as well.

Siberian taiga-forest birch trees, which define the landscape across this region, provided the perfect setting for my wide angle captures. In all wide angle images, Mercury is the dot closest to the sun, and Venus the brighter one nearer the tree on the left.

Photo gallery of the eclipse site and setup            Russia & Siberia trip gallery

SpaceWeather.com       Astronomy Magazine, Nov. 2008
The last glints of sunlight peek from the lunar valleys at the start of the eclipse:
Overexposing shows outer corona detail:
Underexposing shows the red prominences flaring from the sun:
Below, an attempt at a composite image to bring out more detail in the inner and outer corona:
Totality ends as the first beam of sunlight reemerges:
This vertical digital multiple exposure was Astronomy Magazine's Reader Gallery photo of the month for November 2008:
This vertical wide angle is closer to the actual sky brightness that the eye sees:
Auto exposures show the changing light as the eclipse progresses during partial and total phases. In reality, the light during totality is darker than as seen in the horizontal wide angle photos on this page. During partial phases, as the sun becomes a thin crescent, the light dims and shadows become more degined; objects appear almost ghostly.
More sequence designs. The first can be seen in Astronomy Magazine, Nov. 2008: