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Counties in Taiwan to hold public event for annular solar eclipse

Taitung County government in Taiwan is planning to hold a public event to observe the annular solar eclipse that will be seen in some parts of the country on this year's summer solstice on June 21.

According to the president of the Taitung Astronomical Association, Yang Yi-chin, the astronomical phenomenon happens when the moon passes between the sun and the earth, covering the sun's center and leaving the sun's visible outer rim, or corona, to form an annulus around the moon.

Yang added, the eclipse will start at about 2:51 p.m. and end at 5:26 p.m. During the process, the sun will be seen 98 percent covered in parts of  Yunlin, Chiayi, Tainan, Kaohsiung Nantou, Hualien and Taitung, as well as the outlying Penghu and Kinmen islands. On the other hand, other parts of country will only see the sun at around 94 percent dark.

After that, the phenomenon is expected to happen again on 2070 in Taiwan where only parts of Pingtung will witness the eclipse. Based on the data compiled by the Taipei Astronomical Museum, the next time an annular solar eclipse that will cover such a large percentage of the sun in Taiwan will only occur 195 years later on June 28, 2215.

During the event, there will be 1,000 astronomical observation telescopes and 500 picnic mats provided while music and folk dance performances is be enjoyed, said the Chihshang Township office.

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