Solar Eclipses

Written by Amirul Hazim

Solar eclipse is a natural phenomenon that occurs due to the position of the Moon is between the Earth and the Sun. Solar eclipse occurs quite frequent every year but the type of eclipse and the location where it occurs is different. This is due to the position of the Sun, the Moon and the Earth are varies throughout each year and even every day.

What does eclipse means?

In the Arabic word, eclipse are given with two words in order to differentiate between solar eclipse and lunar eclipse. For solar eclipse, the term used is كسوف pronounced as “Kusuf”. The meanings are sorrow, covered, pieces, hard and pale. For lunar eclipse, it is referred as خسوف pronounced as “Khusuf”. The meanings are entered, disappeared, splitting, insult, decreased, dark and hunger.

In English word, the word eclipse is originated from a latin word which is eclipsis refers from a Greek word ekleipsis that means ‘an abandoment’, ‘a failing’ or ‘foresaking’. The original word are combination of the word “ek” which means out and “leipin” which means to leave.

Types of Solar Eclipse

There are 4 types of solar eclipses which are Total Solar Eclipse, Annular Solar Eclipse, Hybrid Solar Eclipse and Partial Solar Eclipse.

Total Solar Eclipse

credit: Telok Kemang Observatory

Total Solar Eclipse occurs when the Moon is at perigee and between the Earth and the Sun. Due to this, the Moon blocks the sunlight from reaching certain places on Earth. There is only a small portion of the Earth experiencing Total Solar Eclipse when the place is in the path of totality. During Total Solar Eclipse we can see prominence and corona of the Sun.

Eclipse Path, the thin red line is where 100% Total Solar Eclipse occurs.

Annular Solar Eclipse

credit: Telok Kemang Observatory

Annular Solar Eclipse occurs when the Moon is at apogee and between the Earth and the Sun. As the Moon do not blocks the Sun totally, some of the sunlight falls on the Earth and the Sun will looks like a ring in the sky. We need to use solar filter for this eclipse phenomenon because the Moon does not blocks the sunlight entirely.

Hybrid Solar Eclipse

Direction of Moon’s orbit. (credit:

Hybrid Solar Eclipse is a rare phenomenon of solar eclipse. This is where at certain place on Earth, Annular Solar Eclipse can happen, Total Solar Eclipse can happen and Partial Solar Eclipse can happen. This phenomenon occurs due to the curvature of the Earth as the Moon orbits the Earth and it blocks the sunlight at the places that it moves. If the umbra shadow of the Moon falls on Earth, that place will experience Total Solar Eclipse. If the penumbra shadow of the Moon falls on Earth, that place will experience Partial Solar Eclipse. If the antumbra shadow of the Moon falls on Earth, that place will experience Annular Solar Eclipse. Antumbra is half –shadow that begins where the umbra shadow ends.

Position of the Umbra, Penumbra and Antumbra shadows. (credit:
Different distance, different solar eclipse event. (credit:

Partial Solar Eclipse

credit: Telok Kemang Observatory

Partial Solar Eclipse occurs when the Moon is between the Earth and the Sun but the Moon only blocks almost half or half or more than half but not totally of the Sun. Depending where the location does the shadow of the Moon falls on Earth. We need to use solar filter for this eclipse phenomenon because the Moon does not blocks the sunlight entirely.

Solar Eclipse during the Time of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)

One of the Hadith that records Solar Eclipse phenomenon was from Abi Musa, he said:
“During the time of prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) solar eclipse had happened, therefore, he wake up immediately because worries if the Doomsday had come then he went to the mosque. Prophet Muhammad performs prayer by standing, bow (ruku’) and prostrate (sujud) in a long time each, and I never saw prophet Muhammad pray that takes a long time like that. After that, prophet said: Indeed, these are the verses sent by Allah, where its (eclipse) occurrence does not happened due to someone’s death or a life but Allah sent it (eclipse)  to frighten His servants. Therefore, when you see it (eclipse), immediately remember Him and pray to seek for forgiveness from Him.” (Sahih Muslim, authentic hadith).

Solar Eclipse Calendar

Here are the upcoming Solar Eclipse Phenomenon:

credit: NASA, Eclipse
credit: NASA, Eclipse

Eclipse Predictions Fred Espenak, NASA/GSFC Emeritus,

Matt Williams. 27 September 2016. “What is a Total Eclipse?”. Universe Today.

n.a. 7 August 2017. “Annular Eclipse”. NASA.

n.a. 2018. Ringkasan Ilmu Falak. Mohamad Faizal Jani. Malaysia.

n.a. “What is a Hybrid Solar Eclipse?”.


Galaxy 101

Written by Muhammad Najmi Nazri

When the night comes and the sky darken, we will see a lot of shining stars. Eventough there is a lot of stars out there but the universe is still dark. That means the universe is so big that the stars cannot brighten up the darkness of the universe. Our solar system is a tiny part of milky way, a spiral galaxy. Can you imagine that? We think that our solar system is already big but we are just a tiny part of the galaxy. In outer space, there are a lot of galaxies with different shape, not only spiral like our milky way.

Location of us in the galaxy.

A galaxy is a huge collection of gas, dust, and billions of stars and their solar systems, all held together by gravity. Our galaxy, the Milky Way, also has a super massive black hole in the middle. When you look up at stars in the night sky, you’re seeing other stars in the Milky Way. If it’s really dark, far away from lights from cities and houses, you can even see the dusty bands of the Milky Way stretch across the sky.

There are many galaxies besides ours, though. There are so many, we can’t even count them all yet! The  Hubble Space Telescope looked at a small patch of space for 12 days and found 10,000 galaxies, of all sizes, shapes, and colors. Some scientists think there could be as many as galaxies in the universe.

There are 3 types of galaxies in our universe. Some galaxies are spiral-shaped like ours. They have curved arms that make it look like a pinwheel. Other galaxies are smooth and oval shaped. They’re called elliptical galaxies. And there are also galaxies that aren’t spirals or ovals. They have irregular shapes and look like blobs. The light that we see from each of these galaxies comes from the stars inside it.

Types of galaxies.

Sometimes galaxies get too close and smash into each other. Our Milky Way galaxy will someday bump into Andromeda, our closest galactic neighbour. But don’t worry. It won’t happen for about five billion years. Although Andromeda is the closest galaxy to milky way, still the distance from the galaxy to earth is 2.5 millions light year. If our galaxy bump with Andromeda tomorrow, you might not notice. Galaxies are so big and spread out at the ends that even though galaxies bump into each other, the planets and solar systems often don’t get close to colliding.


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