A celestial wonder that attracted one and all

Last Updated 26 December 2019, 20:13 IST

The annular solar eclipse witnessed a lot of people sidelining superstitious beliefs and celebrating the celestial occasion on Thursday.

The Poornaprajna Amateur Astronomers’ Club of Poornaprajna College facilitated the setting up of seven telescopes. Citizens viewed the eclipse using five telescopes while one telescope was connected to a LED screen. Nearly 3,000 people gathered on the college campus and watched through the LED screen, pin-hole projectors installed by the students, solar filter goggles and other apparatuses.

The Department of Physics, Poornaprajna College, organised the programme and also released an Amateur Astronomer Manual with astronomical data for the next five years. P J Bhat, retired deputy director of URSC, Niveditha, deputy director, HR policy and management from ISRO, were the chief guests.

Students and the public gathered to view the eclipse at 8 am and enjoyed the near annular eclipse at 9.24 am. Along with the eclipse, students built several models and exhibition on Physics and ISRO rocket models to celebrate the eclipse and to commemorate the birth centenary of Dr Vikram Sarabhai.

P J Bhat delivered a talk on the ISRO’s achievements.

Dr A P Bhat, coordinator, Poornaprajna Amateur Astronomers’ Club of Poornaprajna College, said that he made the attempts to ensure that people viewed the spectacular celestial programme.

Sunanda Nayak, after witnessing the celestial phenomenon, declared that it had been a unique opportunity. She said the Club’s initiatives encouraged people to step out from their age-old beliefs.

Decade’s last solar eclipse

In Mangaluru, Skywatchers thronged to the premises of The Bharath Academy to witness the annular solar eclipse organised by Centre for Advanced Learning (CFAL).

people gazed at the sun wearing their solar eclipse glasses (Safe NASA certified solar glasses).

A high-powered telescope was also set up for the public to have a safe and great view. The event was live-streamed on a YouTube channel to help people enjoy the celestial event from their comfort zones.

Prathyush Poduval, silver medallist at the International Olympiad on Astronomy and Astrophysics in IOAA 2018, and many other alumni of CFAL were present.

(Published 26 December 2019, 19:01 IST)

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