This picture shows the Sun, Moon, and Earth during an eclipse of the Sun.
Click on image for full size
Windows to the Universe original image

Eclipse of the Sun on May 31, 2003
News story originally written on June 6, 2003

An eclipse of the Sun could be seen from a small area on Earth on May 31, 2003. People in Scotland, Iceland, and Greenland had a chance to see the eclipse.

An eclipse of the Sun happens when the Moon moves between the Sun and the Earth. If you were in the right place to see an eclipse, you would see the Sun hide behind the Moon. This eclipse was a strange kind of eclipse. Sometimes the Moon looks a little smaller than usual because it is further away. That happened during this eclipse. The Moon didn't quite cover up the Sun the whole way.

Did you miss this eclipse? If so, there is another one later this year. But you may have to be a penguin to see it! The next eclipse of the Sun will be in November. The only place to see it will be in Antarctica!

Last modified June 12, 2003 by Randy Russell.

You might also be interested in:

More and more Moons of Jupiter

Astronomers have discovered twelve new moons of Jupiter so far this year. Jupiter is the largest planet in our Solar System. It has more moons than any other planet. Jupiter has 52 moons that we know about....more

Mars Close to Earth in August 2003

On August 27, 2003, Earth and Mars will be very close together. Well, close for planets anyways. The two planets will still be almost 56 million kilometers (about 35 million miles) apart. They will be...more

More Moons around Jupiter & Saturn

Astronomers have discovered nine new moons. The astronomers found eight new moons of Jupiter and one new moon of Saturn. Jupiter has 60 moons that we know about. Saturn has 31. All of the new moons are...more

Mercury Transit on May 7, 2003

The planet Mercury crossed in front of the Sun on May 7, 2003. When that happens, astronomers call it a transit. A transit is like a solar eclipse. An eclipse happens when the Moon passes in front of the...more

Spots on the Sun

Did you know that the Sun has spots? Right now it has some very big spots. There are two groups of sunspots on the Sun right now. Each group is about as big as the planet Jupiter, which is the largest...more

More than 100 planets orbit distant stars!

Astronomers have found another planet outside our solar system. That makes a total of 102 exoplanets that have been found so far! The astronomers that found the exoplanet, have been searching outside...more

Map of the Sky

Have you ever wanted to see a picture of a star? How about 2 million pictures?! The Two-Micron All Sky Survey (2MASS)has put together all these images of stars for you to see! Just click on the link below...more

The Equator is Growing!

Earth may look like a giant marble from space, but it is not exactly round! It is a little wider around the equator, like a tangerine. But Earth's shape does not stay the same! Scientists have been watching...more

Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part is sponsored in part through grants from federal agencies (NASA and NOAA), and partnerships with affiliated organizations, including the American Geophysical Union, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Earth System Information Partnership, the American Meteorological Society, the National Center for Science Education, and TERC. The American Geophysical Union and the American Geosciences Institute are Windows to the Universe Founding Partners. NESTA welcomes new Institutional Affiliates in support of our ongoing programs, as well as collaborations on new projects. Contact NESTA for more information. NASA ESIP NCSE HHMI AGU AGI AMS NOAA