Partial Eclipse 2015

Introduction | Photos of the Partial Eclipse | Lightness Comparisons | Links


On March 20, 2015, in most parts of Europe a partial solar eclipse of the sun could be observed in the morning. Only between the Faeroe Islands and Spitsbergen the eclipse was total, and almost exclusively on Spitsbergen the total eclipse was actually observable. In Germany, the maximum coverage of the sun varied between 70% in the South and some 80% in the North. Thanks to the good weather, the eclipse was observable almost everywhere in Germany (in Bochum at the observatory, however, it was foggy...). Depending on the location, the observation period varied; here in Mühlhausen (Kraichgau, Germany) it lasted about from 9:30 to 11:45 a.m. CET. For details, see the links below or Wikipedia. See also the video of a band in the Faeroe Islands that was recorded during the total eclipse of the sun and shows the eclipse in the background (the music is, of course, a matter of personal taste...).

This time, I wanted to document the entire course of the eclipse - which resulted in a huge number of photos. In addition, I had thought about such a project at the last minute only and was ill-prepared... I took the photos with my Ricoh GXR P10 camera module, because this offers the largest focal length of all my cameras. I held the camera in my hands (hence the orientation is not always the same) and held one glass of a pair of eclipse glasses in front of the lens, thus using it as a sun filter (the filter was a bit uneven). To keep the filter always optimally in front of the lens was quite fiddly. So I often hit camera buttons and changed the zoom level and the exposure compensation inadvertently (hence the different sizes in the "Start" group). Basically, I was able to record only the silhouette of the "covered" sun this way, the surround was black or showed indefinable patterns (I measured the light level centrally directly for the sun). I usually sat on a chair when taking photos, but during some shots from the "Start" group I was standing.

Now a few words about the "darkening" that the eclipse caused. During the total solar eclipse of 1999 it became really dark, but because I used the program automatic exposure with my Nikon 950, I got bright blurred images instead of dark ones. This time, I wanted to be smarter. I "calibrated" my Leica Vario X using a special motif and them took photos in M (manual) mode using these settings (the motif was always Astrid observing the eclipse). It turned out that I had probably calibrated the camera too late in the course of the eclipse, because in the end, when the sun was almost uncovered again, the images were overexposed. If I interpret the display of the manual exposure mode correctly, there was a difference of approximately two f-stops between light and dark. To my feeling, it was more than two f-stops, because we had the impression that it became noticeably darker during the peak of the eclipse. The light impression is hard to describe for me. All in all, it was no comparison to the total solar eclipse.

Video showing how it is getting darker and lighter during the eclipse:


Photos of the Partial Eclipse

A few comments on the photos below:

If you click a thumb nail, a 1:1 section of the image will appear in a new window. You have to close this new window manually!


9:35 a.m. CET

9:43 a.m. CET

9:53 a.m. CET

10:00 a.m. CET

10:08 a.m. CET

10:14 a.m. CET

Main Phase

10:21 a.m. CET

10:23 a.m. CET

10:26 a.m. CET

10:29 a.m. CET

10:32 a.m. CET

10:34 a.m. CET

10:35 a.m. CET

10:37 a.m. CET

10:43 a.m. CET

10:45 a.m. CET

10:48 a.m. CET

10:50 a.m. CET

10:55 a.m. CET

11:00 a.m. CET

11:05 a.m. CET


11:17 a.m. CET

11:27 a.m. CET

11:31 a.m. CET

11:35 a.m. CET

11:37 a.m. CET

11:40 a.m. CET

Final Phase

11:43 a.m. CET

11:44 a.m. CET

11:45 a.m. CET

11:47 a.m. CET

11:48 a.m. CET

11:48 a.m. CET

11:48 a.m. CET

11:48 a.m. CET

11:49 a.m. CET

11:49 a.m. CET

11:49 a.m. CET

11:49 a.m. CET


 Partial Eclipse, March 20, 2015 - Ricoh GXR P10


Lightness Comparisons

A few comments on the photos below:

If you click a thumb nail, a larger version of the image will appear in a new window. You have to close this new window manually!

10:12 a.m. CET

10:29 a.m. CET

10:31 a.m. CET

10:33 a.m. CET (28 mm)

10:33 a.m. CET

10:46 a.m. CET

10:53 a.m. CET

11:07 a.m. CET

11:15 a.m. CET

11:26 a.m. CET


 Lightness impression during partial eclipse, March 20, 2015 - Leica X Vario, 1/250s, f/5.6, ISO 200




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