Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

2003 June 18
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Clouds and the Moon Move to Block the Sun
Credit & Copyright: Peter Wienerroither

Explanation: High above a small church near Vienna, Austria, clouds and the Moon vied for position in front of the Sun. Such was the case on the ground late last month during a partial eclipse of the Sun visible throughout Europe and Asia. Nearing the farthest part of its orbit around the Earth, the Moon's angular size was too small to block the entire Sun, a situation that would have resulted in a total solar eclipse. The next solar eclipse visible from Earth will occur on November 23. Although a total eclipse will be visible only from parts of Antarctica, parts of the Sun will momentarily disappear for observers across Australia, New Zealand, and the southernmost tip of South America.

Tomorrow's picture: moon maiden

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