The Sun

Airplane crossing the Sun

Airplane Crossing the Sun on May 20, 2012

As I was taking images of the end of the annular eclipse on May 20, 2012, an airplane flew across the Sun from my vantage point. In the upper left hand corner of the Sun, you can still see the edge of the Moon. The partial eclipse phase was only a few minutes away from the end when this occurred. It was a lucky catch.

These images were taken from a location near Reno, Nevada where I observed the annular solar eclipse on May 20, 2012. I used a Takahashi FS-78 refractor mounted on a modified Takahashi EM-10 mount and a Cannon EOS Digital Rebel SLR camera. A Thousand Oaks Optical Type 2+ solar filter was placed over the objective of the refractor. This was the same telescope and mount that I used to photograph the total eclipse of the Sun on February 26, 1998, and the transit of Venus on June 8, 2004. This "transit" of an airplane across the Sun was perhaps a good opportunity to practice for the transit of Venus on June 5, 2012, although Venus took hours to cross the Sun during the transit, while this airplane did so in only a few seconds. These images were published in the Comstock Chronical newspaper in Virginia City, Nevada, on May 25, 2012, and also published on

The Sun
May 20, 2012
Image by Sid Leach
Reno, Nevada

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