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Rod Pommier

Location of Photo:

Near Kastamonu, Turkey

Date/Time of photo:

199-08-11, approximately 11:23 UT


Celestron Super C8 Plus on Byers drive, Celestron f/6.3 focal reducer/corrector, Leica R3 camera, Fuji 100 color film, multiple exposures from 1/2000 to 5 seconds.


The pandemic precluded traveling to South America to see and photograph the 2020-12-14 total solar eclipse, so instead I decided to try re-processing images from a previous total solar eclipse trip. I photographed the 1999-08-11 total solar eclipse on the centerline just northwest of Kastamonu, Turkey. It was the preceeding eclipse in Saros 145 to the Great American Eclipse of 2017. Eclipses within a Saros repeat every 18 years, 11 days and 8 hours (one Saros), which means it was virtually identical to the Great American Eclipse with respect to its location in the sky (in the constellation Leo), duration (just over 2 minutes), and the path it traced across the Earth, except the path was shifted 8 hours to the east on the globe, which is why it was visible from Turkey instead of the U.S. It is well known that no single exposure can capture all that the human eye can see during totality. Different exposures are required to capture prominences, inner, middle, and outer corona. If the required exposures are obtained with a digital camera, then the images can be combined into a single image approximating what the human eye sees using high dynamic range imaging processing techniques. However, I photographed the 1999 eclipse on film. So, all I have had for all these years are those individual exposures. Now, years later, I am able to scan those film negatives ,converting them to digital images, and use high dynamic range image processing to combine them into an image of that eclipse like none I’ve had for the past 21 years; an image that looks like what I saw with my eyes and that no single film frame could ever show.




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