Eclipse to cover whole of Uganda

Wednesday October 23 2013


If you cannot make it to Pakwach, Nebbi, Arua , Masindi or Gulu districts, not all hope should be lost. According to a senior expert at the department of meteorology, the whole country will be able to experience the once-in-a lifetime hybrid solar eclipse to occur on November 3 although the vantage points will be in West Nile.

Mr Khalid Muwembe, a senior meteorologist, said the eclipse will even be viewed as far as parts of Tanzania but only West Nile in Uganda will experience a total eclipse- where the moon completely covers the sun.

The hybrid eclipse derives its name from its duo characteristics where it starts as an annular – moon does not completely cover the sun and a total eclipse- the moon completely covers the sun.

“The duality comes about when the vertex of the moon’s umbral shadow pierces the earth’s surface at some locations, but falls short of the planet along other sections of the path,” reads a statement from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

How eclipse will start
The eclipse is projected to start in phases at 2.30pm and slowly progress to reach its maximum point when a total shadow is experienced, at 4.15pm in the vintage districts for about 100 seconds.

“To the viewer, the amount of time in darkness will be a bit more. We expect darkness to clear between 5.30pm and 6pm and we see the sun momentarily before it finally sets,” Mr Muwembe, who is also public relations officer for the department, said.


The eclipse happens when the moon in its movement goes between the earth and the sun temporarily creating darkness on the earth.

The last time this particular eclipse happened was about 500 years ago and the next is anticipated to occur 124 years from today on June 3, 2114.