Baily’s Beads – Total Solar Eclipse

Many CIERA members travelled to the April 8th solar eclipse’s path of totality, including graduate student Imran Sultan. This photo was taken from Millinocket, Maine, the last part of the US on the path of totality. Moments before totality, we can see Baily’s Beads, which is sunlight going through the mountains, craters, and valleys on the moon. The Baily’s Beads are sunlight seeping through the surface features of the moon. In this composite picture Sultan combined his photos of Baily’s Beads at the beginning and end of totality. We can also see the incredible bright red prominences reaching out of the sun. The phenomenon is named after English astronomer Francis Baily, who explained the effects in 1836, although the first recorded observations were made by Sir Edmond Halley in 1715.
Sultan used a refractor telescope, DSLR camera, and a sky-tracking system to track the sun.

Credit: Imran Sultan/Northwestern/CIERA

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