September 1st 2016, was the date of the annular solar eclipse (also known as a “ring of fire” eclipse), a rare event that only occurs when there is new moon covering part of the sun. During this exciting occurrence, a ring of sunshine is usually witnessed as the moon is sandwiched between the Earth and sun. Yesterday morning, the eclipse engulfed Kitale, Nakuru, Eldoret and Bungoma towns and lasted a lengthy 4 hours.
Unlike its famous brother the full eclipse, the annular eclipse does not see the sun get completely covered, but instead as the name suggests, creates a ring of fire. Viewers on ground see red slivers of sunlight shinning around the new moon, as opposed to the white halo displayed during a full eclipse.
A member of NASA said, “If they look up with protective eye wear they are going to see this strange ring in the sky, more spectacularly they will see these circular shadows.” That being said, it is crucial that one wears protective eye wear before staring at an eclipse, to avoid going blind.
The reason every eclipse isn’t a total solar eclipse has to do with the moon’s elliptical orbit. At some points along its journey it is closer to Earth and at some points it’s farther away. The eclipse began at 10; 30am and ended at 1; 38pm, the best time to catch it however was around 11; 47 am. Several people definitely took it upon themselves to marvel and appreciate the solar event. Gazing at the eclipse is in itself a recreational event enjoyed by several people throughout the world. And nowadays, with the generic habit of snapping away at eventful moments, it was highly likely that people would take the spectacle to social media. Numerous twitter accounts included images of the rare manifestation; here are a few pictures shared on the social media platform.
— Dominyk Lever (@zoOmphotosafari) September 1, 2016
An actual current photo of the eclipse ?? pic.twitter.com/MYVS37oWTA
— Idris Sultan (@IdrisSultan) September 1, 2016
— Bob Allan? (@AllanKar4) September 1, 2016
— francis mkilema (@paraciko) September 1, 2016