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Total Solar Eclipse: What to Expect as Moon Blocks Sun (Photos)

Total Solar Eclipse: Waiting for Totality

Imelda B. Joson and Edwin L. Aguirre

Total solar eclipse, March 29, 2006: When the moon’s dark shadow swiftly and silently swept over the observing site in Salloum, Egypt, people cheered, whooped and cried; many devout Muslims also said a special prayer to Allah. This photo was taken by veteran eclipse chasers Imelda Joson and Edwin Aguirre.

Total Solar Eclipse 2006: Telescope Setup

Imelda B. Joson and Edwin L. Aguirre

Total solar eclipse, March 29, 2006: Veteran eclipse photographers Imelda Joson and Edwin Aguirre used an imaging setup consisted of a Canon EOS 20D digital SLR camera attached to a Takahashi FS-78 f/8 apochromatic refractor, which was fitted with a Thousand Oaks Optical solar filter and mounted on a Meade LXD75 equatorial mount. Riding next to the telescope was a Sony Digital 8 video camcorder.

Total Solar Eclipse 2006: U.S. Ambassador

Imelda B. Joson and Edwin L. Aguirre

Veteran solar eclipse photographers Imelda Joson and Edwin Aguirre of Massachusetts, holding their "lucky" U.S. and Philippine flags, celebrate the successful total solar eclipse observation of March 29, 2006, with Francis J. Ricciardone Jr., then-U.S. ambassador to Egypt, and his wife, Marie, in Salloum, Egypt. The flags have been with Imelda and Edwin on every eclipse expedition since 1988.

Total Solar Eclipse 2006: Egypt Sightseeing

Imelda B. Joson and Edwin L. Aguirre

After the successful March 2006 total solar eclipse expedition across Egypt’s Western Desert, veteran eclipse chasers Imelda Joson and Edwin Aguirre stayed for a few more days in the country to explore its archeological wonders, including the Pyramids and the Great Sphinx at Giza, the Step Pyramid at Saqqara, the colossal granite statue of Rameses the Great at Memphis, and the fabulous treasures of King Tutankhamen and the royal mummies at the Cairo Museum.

Solar Eclipse 1998: Caribbean Cruise Crowd

Imelda B. Joson and Edwin L. Aguirre

During the Nov. 14, 2012, total solar eclipse in Australia and the South Pacific, cruise ships will be positioned off the coast of New Caledonia and New Zealand to intercept the moon’s shadow on the open waters of the South Pacific. Veteran eclipse chasers Imelda Joson and Edwin Aguirre photographed this view of the fore deck of Holland America’s MS Veendam packed with eclipse chasers during the total solar eclipse on Feb. 26, 1998 in the Caribbean Sea.

Total Solar Eclipse 1998: Eclipse Chasers

Imelda B. Joson and Edwin L. Aguirre

Veteran eclipse chasers Imelda Joson and Edwin Aguirre were all smiles after successfully observing the total solar eclipse on Feb. 26, 1998 aboard the MS Veendam in the Caribbean Sea, between the islands of Aruba and Curacao. Imelda and Edwin were the expedition leaders for the eclipse cruise, and as such, they spent the early morning hours on eclipse day on the bridge with the ship’s captain, his first officer and a guest meteorologist, trying to figure out the best way to dodge clouds and escape high winds that were threatening to spoil the view. The Veendam performed a figure-8 maneuver at sea along the eclipse track’s central line and, fortunately, the gamble worked! The ship’s more than 1,000 passengers enjoyed the 3 1.2-minute-long totality under perfectly clear, blue skies and calm seas.

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