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July 21/22, 2009 — Total Solar Eclipse

Millions of people in India, China, and other parts of Asia witness a total solar eclipse on July 22, 2009. Cities such as Surat, in India, as well as Chengdu, Shanghai, and Wuhan, in China, experience the eclipse’s totality. Visitors at the Taj Mahal, which is listed as one of the modern world’s seven wonders, witness this eclipse.

This is the longest total solar eclipse in the 21st century, and will not be surpassed in duration until June 13, 2132. The moon's umbra travels along a track that is about 15,150km (about 9414 miles) long and covers 0.71 percent of the Earth’s surface area over a course of three hours and 25 minutes. The eclipse’s maximum duration of totality is six minutes and 39 seconds.

Was this Total Solar Eclipse visible in Washington DC?

What the Eclipse Looked Like Near the Maximum Point

The animation shows what the eclipse approximately looked like near the maximum point.

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Path of the Eclipse Shadow

Regions that saw, at least, a partial eclipse: South/East Asia, North in Australia, Pacific, Indian Ocean.

Eclipse Shadow Path

Portion of Sun covered by the Moon (Eclipse obscuration)

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The dark areas symbolize night and twilight.

Where the Eclipse Was Seen

Eclipse Path For July 21/22, 2009 Eclipse
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The eclipse's path

According to NASA, the path of the moon's umbral shadow begins in India and crosses through Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan and China before curving south across the Pacific Ocean. A partial eclipse is seen within the much broader path of the moon's penumbral (partially shaded outer region) shadow, which includes most of eastern Asia, Indonesia, and the Pacific Ocean.

Expand for cities where at least part of the total eclipse was visible
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Was this eclipse visible in Washington DC?

When the Eclipse Happened Worldwide — Timeline

The eclipse started at one location and ended at another. The times below are actual times (in UTC) when the eclipse occurred.

EventUTC TimeTime in Washington DC*
First location to see the partial eclipse beginJul 21 at 23:58Jul 21 at 7:58 pm
First location to see the full eclipse beginJul 22 at 00:51Jul 21 at 8:51 pm
Maximum EclipseJul 22 at 02:34Jul 21 at 10:34 pm
Last location to see the full eclipse endJul 22 at 04:19Jul 22 at 12:19 am
Last location to see the partial eclipse endJul 22 at 05:12Jul 22 at 1:12 am

* Local times shown do not refer to when the eclipse could be observed from Washington DC. Instead, they indicate the times when the eclipse began, was at its max, and ended, somewhere else on Earth. The corresponding local times are useful if you wanted to view the eclipse via a live webcam.
Eclipses visible in Washington DC.

Next Total Solar Eclipse will be on Jul 11, 2010.


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