Solar Eclipse on March 29, 2006

On Wednesday March 29 one of nature's most beautiful phenomena has occured; a total solar eclipse. The path of the Moon's umbral shadow began in Brazil and extended across the Atlantic, northern Africa, and central Asia where it ended at sunset in western Mongolia.

A partial eclipse has been seen within the much broader path of the Moon's penumbra shadow, which included the northern two thirds of Africa, Europe, and central Asia.

If you were around the point of greatest eclipse in Lybia or on a ship in the Mediterranian or on the south coast of Turkey, you were able to watch up to 4mins of the Total Sun Eclipse (which was distinctly longer than the last solar eclipse across Europe in 1999 with a max time of 2min25sec).

Apart from Lybia, most eclipse fans were heading towards Turkey (e.g., Side) or into the Mediterranian Sea between Cyprus and Crete. Both locations had good weather conditions this time - we were on MSC Melody almost exactly on the central line between Cyprus and Crete and although some clouds were around after first contact, we had a completely brilliant sky at time of totality (13:50 local time) for 3mins 53secs, which led to some very nice pictures. The diamant ring at 2nd contact was very short this time, obviously almost no craters on the moon's surface. A second batch of slides will be put on the web shortly.

Some high-resolution pictures of colleagues situated at Side, Turkey: