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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Solar Eclipse in Liuyang, China!!

We were lucky enough to have a perfect blue sky for today's Solar Eclipse!

A full Eclipse only occurs makes it to the same location less then once a lifetime, so unless you travel to see this event it is very rare.

Liuyang was not quite in the path of "totality", but pretty close. It appeared to me that about 95% of the sun was covered by the moon.

It grew noticeably darker and darker and people began to rush out of the building to get a look. Even with only 5% of the sun exposed, you still can't see anything other then a white hot ball if you look directly at it.

We improvised and used some of the black photographic films that we used for printing our colorful labels. These films proved to be a good filter and let in just enough light to see the crescent shape of the moon covering the sun.

The light given off by the hidden sun is nothing short of spooky, it is not the same light as a cloudy day, it is almost as if you are in a dimly lit room with a small florescent light. It seemed to me at least that the light has shifted somewhat to the blue spectrum (Doppler shift?), or maybe I was just getting wrapped up in the spooky hype surrounding eclipses!

For me, an Eclipse is an exciting and unique experience, however I could observe around me that there is still a lot of superstition that exists around such events in China, as not everyone was as excited and enthusiastic as I was!

Every day is truly an adventure here in Liuyang!
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