Solar eclipse shadow in the Southern Hemisphere

December 4th, 2021 |

GOES-16 Near-Infrared “Snow/Ice” (1.61 µm) images (credit: Tim SchmIt, NOAA/NESDIS) [click to enlarge | MP4]

GOES-16 (GOES-East) Near-Infrared “Snow/Ice” (1.61 µm) images (above) showed the shadow of a total solar ecliipse in the Southern Hemisphere on 04 December 2021. Even though the 1.61 µm imagery is at a lower (1 km) spatial resolution, it provided better contrast than higher-resolution (0.5 km) 0.64 µm “Red” Visible imagery, helping to highlight the shadow (below). Note that the shadow passed over the Antarctic Peninsula.

GOES-16 “Red” Visible (0.64 µm) and Near-Infrared “Snow/Ice” (1.61 µm) images (credit: Tim Schmit, NOAA/NESDIS) [click to enlarge]

GOES-16 CIMSS True Color RGB images (below) provided another view of the eclipse shadow’s progression. 

GOES-16 CIMSS True Color RGB images (credit: Tim Schmit, NOAA/NESDIS) [click to play animated GIF | MP4]

In a 3-panel comparison of GOES-16 “Red” Visible (0.64 µm), Near-Infrared “Snow/Ice” (1.61 µm) and Shortwave Infrared (3.9 µm) images (below), note that the lack of solar reflection within the eclipse shadow led to cooler 3.9 µm brightness temperatures (lighter shades of gray).    

GOES-16 “Red” Visible (0.64 µm, top), Near-Infrared “Snow/Ice” (1.61 µm, middle) and Shortwave Infrared (3.9 µm, bottom) images (credit: Tim Schmit, NOAA/NESDIS/ASPB) [click to play animated GIF | MP4]

The shadow was also apparent in GOES-17 (GOES-West) images (below).

GOES-17 Near-Infrared “Snow/Ice” (1.61 µm) images [click to play animated GIF | MP4]

A composite of POES AVHRR Visible (0.63 µm) swaths around 0700 UTC (below) showed the shadow extending southward across South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands and reaching the coast of Antarctica. 

Composite of POES AHVRR Visible (0.63 µm) swaths [click to enlarge]

In addition, portions of the solar eclipse shadow could be seen in True Color RGB images from Suomi-NPP and NOAA-20, as viewed using RealEarth (below).

VIIRS True Color RGB images from Suomi-NPP and NOAA-20 [clck to enlarge]

This blog post discusses AMRC/AWS staff viewing the partial eclipse from Antarctica’s McMurdo Station.

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