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.
Where the Eclipse Was Seen
Try our new interactive eclipse maps. Zoom in and search for accurate eclipse times and visualizations for any location.
Path of the Eclipse Shadow
Regions that saw, at least, a partial eclipse: South/East Asia, North in Australia, Pacific, Indian Ocean.
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.
Eclipse Shadow Path
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.
|Event||UTC Time||Time in Washington DC*|
|First location to see the partial eclipse begin||Jul 21 at 23:58:17||Jul 21 at 7:58:17 pm|
|First location to see the full eclipse begin||Jul 22 at 00:51:14||Jul 21 at 8:51:14 pm|
|Maximum Eclipse||Jul 22 at 02:35:18||Jul 21 at 10:35:18 pm|
|Last location to see the full eclipse end||Jul 22 at 04:19:23||Jul 22 at 12:19:23 am|
|Last location to see the partial eclipse end||Jul 22 at 05:12:21||Jul 22 at 1:12:21 am|
* These local times do not refer to a specific location but indicate the beginning, peak, and end of the eclipse on a global scale, each line referring to a different location. Please note that the local times for Washington DC are meant as a guideline in case you want to view the eclipse via a live webcam. They do not mean that the eclipse is necessarily visible there.
An Eclipse Never Comes Alone!
A solar eclipse always occurs about two weeks before or after a lunar eclipse.
Usually, there are two eclipses in a row, but other times, there are three during the same eclipse season.
This is the second eclipse this season.
First eclipse this season: July 7, 2009 — Penumbral Lunar Eclipse
Third eclipse this season: August 5–6, 2009 — Penumbral Lunar Eclipse