New Delhi, July 13: People across the world will be able to witness the second solar eclipse of 2018 today. This is the second solar eclipse of the year, the last solar eclipse of 2018 is said to occur on 11th of August. Social media is abuzz with speculations about the eclipse, the interest mounts as the eclipse is to occur on Friday, the 13th. In popular culture, the date has been associated with many superstitions surrounding ill-luck. Experts say that the eclipse will be visible in parts of Southern Australia, such as Melbourne, Adelaide, and Hobart, as well as in Stewart Island on the far south of New Zealand. The eclipse would not be visible to many; those inhabiting the Pacific and Indian Oceans would be able to see the eclipse better. A small part of northern Antarctica would be able to watch the eclipse too. People who want to witness the solar eclipse or the Surya Grahan in India may need special glasses, lenses and camera as the eclipse is not likely to be viewed with naked eyes.
What is a Solar Eclipse?
A solar eclipse also known as Surya Grahan in India is said to occur when the Moon passes between the Sun and Earth, as a result partially or fully blocking the Sun. While a total solar eclipse occurs when the disk of the moon seems to completely block the solar disk, a partial eclipse is said to happen when the moon just covers a part of the sun.
Surya Grahan / Partial Solar Eclipse Time in India:
According to Indian local time, the partial solar eclipse or Surya Grahan would begin on 13th July 2018 at 07:18:23 a.m. and go on till 08:31:05 a.m.
What to not do during Solar Eclipse:
Don’t use ordinary sunglasses, smoked glass, X-ray film, stacks of negative film to view the eclipse
Never look at the sun directly through a telephoto lens of a camera or through a telescope, it can burn your eyes
Taking photos of the eclipse without the use of special protective filters can burn your eyes and harm the camera
Never look at the reflection of an eclipse in water, coloured or otherwise
What to do during Solar Eclipse:
Always use solar eclipse or glasses to see the solar eclipse. Do not see the eclipse with the naked eyes
Use of homemade pinhole camera is the best way to watch an eclipse
During the partial eclipse, do not view Sun directly with naked eyes
Some common superstitions/myths associated with solar eclipses:
During the eclipse, it was believed that people shouldn’t cook or eat food, drink water or go outdoors.
Some people believe in chanting or praying during this period to protect themselves from its harmful effects.
After the eclipse, many people take a bath to purify themselves and change into fresh clothes.
In India, it was believed that the demon Rahu and Ketu chase the Sun and moon and swallow them causing solar and lunar eclipses, but can’t hold them for long, and the Sun and moon emerge unscathed.
A common belief across many cultures is that eclipses can be dangerous for pregnant women and their unborn babies.
Zodiac Signs That Might Get Affected & How to Prevent:
The solar eclipse will have minimum effect in India as it will be partially visible. Though, the celestial event could affect certain zodiac signs that include Cancer, Gemini, and Leo. To help prevent the side effects, one must read Shiva Chalisa during the eclipse time, donate food to the needy and eat Tulsi leaves.
Scientists and astronomers advise that it is dangerous to see solar eclipse through naked eyes and it can also damage the vision. One can use eye protection like sunglasses, x-ray film or special eclipse glasses to witness the eclipse.