APOD: A Desert Eclipse (2023 Oct 01)

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APOD: A Desert Eclipse (2023 Oct 01)

Post by APOD Robot » Sun Oct 01, 2023 4:06 am

Image A Desert Eclipse

Explanation: A good place to see a ring-of-fire eclipse, it seemed, would be from a desert. In a desert, there should be relatively few obscuring clouds and trees. Therefore late December of 2019, a group of photographers traveled to the United Arab Emirates and Rub al-Khali, the largest continuous sand desert in world, to capture clear images of an unusual eclipse that would be passing over. A ring-of-fire eclipse is an annular eclipse that occurs when the Moon is far enough away on its elliptical orbit around the Earth so that it appears too small, angularly, to cover the entire Sun. At the maximum of an annular eclipse, the edges of the Sun can be seen all around the edges of the Moon, so that the Moon appears to be a dark spot that covers most -- but not all -- of the Sun. This particular eclipse, they knew, would peak soon after sunrise. After seeking out such a dry and barren place, it turned out that some of the most interesting eclipse images actually included a tree in the foreground, because, in addition to the sand dunes, the tree gave the surreal background a contrasting sense of normalcy, scale, and texture. On Saturday, October 14, a new ring of fire will be visible through clear skies from a thin swath crossing both North and South America.

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Ann
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Re: APOD: A Desert Eclipse (2023 Oct 01)

Post by Ann » Sun Oct 01, 2023 4:57 am


Today's APOD feels unreal, otherworldly. It looks much like a painting, too, because it is so perfect.

Of course, two things put the landscape squarely on the Earth. The tree, of course. And the ring-of-fire eclipse. Where else in the Solar system (or the Milky Way???) do you find an Earth-Moon-Sun system so perfect proportional that the Sun and the Moon are (usually) the same angular size in the sky, and how many planets have a moon so large that the two bodies must be considered a double planet?

Two other things make the scene Earthlike to me. There is the apparent size of the Sun in the sky (and we can judge its size thanks to the tree), and the fine-grained sand forming soft dunes. There may be similar dunes of fine-grained sand on Mars, but if so, no NASA probe has managed to land close to one.

I mentioned Mars, because the strange yellow light suffusing the image makes the scene unworldly (and somewhat Mars-like) to me. I guess the color is due to the early morning reddening of the sunlight, plus, I would guess, the presence of fine desert dust in the air scattering the reddened sunlight, painting the entire landscape golden.

Still, you can't mistake this landscape on the Earth for Mars. You can't.

(And by the way... I found an actual photograph of Mars that I like, but I also found a painting of a Martian landscape that is really reminiscent of today's APOD. Or so I think anyway.)

Ann
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Christian G.
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Re: APOD: A Desert Eclipse (2023 Oct 01)

Post by Christian G. » Sun Oct 01, 2023 11:26 am

Ann wrote: Sun Oct 01, 2023 4:57 am It looks much like a painting
Indeed! Could be a Dali painting, that single tree lost in the middle of a desert already looks surreal, like some mirage, and then there is that eclipse on top of it…

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Chris Peterson
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Re: APOD: A Desert Eclipse (2023 Oct 01)

Post by Chris Peterson » Sun Oct 01, 2023 2:02 pm

Ann wrote: Sun Oct 01, 2023 4:57 am
Two other things make the scene Earthlike to me. There is the apparent size of the Sun in the sky (and we can judge its size thanks to the tree)...
How so? The Sun could be made to look much larger or much smaller simply by changing the distance between the camera and the tree. (Also worth noting that the Sun is blown out, which both makes it look larger, and makes the Moon look smaller than in actuality.)
Chris

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Roy

Re: APOD: A Desert Eclipse (2023 Oct 01)

Post by Roy » Sun Oct 01, 2023 7:18 pm

Water would be needed for the tree. Water would produce an oasis, not just one tree growing out of sand dunes. I think the tree is staged, part of another photograph. For Ann’s effect as stated.

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Re: APOD: A Desert Eclipse (2023 Oct 01)

Post by orin stepanek » Sun Oct 01, 2023 7:27 pm

Ann wrote: Sun Oct 01, 2023 4:57 am
Today's APOD feels unreal, otherworldly. It looks much like a painting, too, because it is so perfect.

Of course, two things put the landscape squarely on the Earth. The tree, of course. And the ring-of-fire eclipse. Where else in the Solar system (or the Milky Way???) do you find an Earth-Moon-Sun system so perfect proportional that the Sun and the Moon are (usually) the same angular size in the sky, and how many planets have a moon so large that the two bodies must be considered a double planet?

Two other things make the scene Earthlike to me. There is the apparent size of the Sun in the sky (and we can judge its size thanks to the tree), and the fine-grained sand forming soft dunes. There may be similar dunes of fine-grained sand on Mars, but if so, no NASA probe has managed to land close to one.

I mentioned Mars, because the strange yellow light suffusing the image makes the scene unworldly (and somewhat Mars-like) to me. I guess the color is due to the early morning reddening of the sunlight, plus, I would guess, the presence of fine desert dust in the air scattering the reddened sunlight, painting the entire landscape golden.

Still, you can't mistake this landscape on the Earth for Mars. You can't.

(And by the way... I found an actual photograph of Mars that I like, but I also found a painting of a Martian landscape that is really reminiscent of today's APOD. Or so I think anyway.)

Ann
I think it looks like a nice silhouette of the tree! It would be a great framed picture to hang on a wall! :D
Orin

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Re: APOD: A Desert Eclipse (2023 Oct 01)

Post by johnnydeep » Sun Oct 01, 2023 8:47 pm

Ann wrote: Sun Oct 01, 2023 4:57 am
Today's APOD feels unreal, otherworldly. It looks much like a painting, too, because it is so perfect.

Of course, two things put the landscape squarely on the Earth. The tree, of course. And the ring-of-fire eclipse. Where else in the Solar system (or the Milky Way???) do you find an Earth-Moon-Sun system so perfect proportional that the Sun and the Moon are (usually) the same angular size in the sky, and how many planets have a moon so large that the two bodies must be considered a double planet?

Two other things make the scene Earthlike to me. There is the apparent size of the Sun in the sky (and we can judge its size thanks to the tree), and the fine-grained sand forming soft dunes. There may be similar dunes of fine-grained sand on Mars, but if so, no NASA probe has managed to land close to one.
...
Ann
Personally, I think the overexposed eclipse actually detracts from the stunning Earth scene below. The sand is surreal.

As for similar dunes on Mars, the sand dunes link shows a nice similarly fine-grained - perhaps even more so - and very dark dune up close:

--
"To B̬̻̋̚o̞̮̚̚l̘̲̀᷾d̫͓᷅ͩḷ̯᷁ͮȳ͙᷊͠ Go......Beyond The F͇̤i̙̖e̤̟l̡͓d͈̹s̙͚ We Know."{ʲₒʰₙNYᵈₑᵉₚ}

Maxime Daviron

Re: APOD: A Desert Eclipse (2023 Oct 01)

Post by Maxime Daviron » Mon Oct 02, 2023 2:47 pm

Hi everyone ! I'm the photographer who took that picture. Thanks a lot for your appreciation ! :ssmile:
I just discovered this forum. To give a bit of context, this picture was submitted in early january 2020, and was APOD on january 13, 2020 for the first time. So this second APOD is such a surprise !

Here is another picture taken a few minutes prior to the totality of this annular eclipse (which peaked at something like 98% where I was, which explain why it's still very bright at this time).

Image
Roy wrote: Sun Oct 01, 2023 7:18 pm Water would be needed for the tree. Water would produce an oasis, not just one tree growing out of sand dunes. I think the tree is staged, part of another photograph. For Ann’s effect as stated.
Actually you can find many of these trees (called Ghaf trees) in some places of this desert. There was also a small village nearby and a few camel farms, so there must have been some water underground indeed. This tree was actually surrounded by small bushes which are hidden by the small dunes in the foreground, and we even discovered some kind of desert mushrooms there. This one was particularly exceptionnal due to its location, and I spent two sunrises before the eclipse to "rehearse" for the D day, so I have many pictures of that tree.

Image

Preparatory picture, two days before the eclipse :

Image

Here is another tree of the same species, perfect for a nap :

Image

Hope it helped ! Have a nice day everyone.

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Re: APOD: A Desert Eclipse (2023 Oct 01)

Post by johnnydeep » Mon Oct 02, 2023 3:25 pm

Maxime Daviron wrote: Mon Oct 02, 2023 2:47 pm Hi everyone ! I'm the photographer who took that picture. Thanks a lot for your appreciation ! :ssmile:
I just discovered this forum. To give a bit of context, this picture was submitted in early january 2020, and was APOD on january 13, 2020 for the first time. So this second APOD is such a surprise !

Here is another picture taken a few minutes prior to the totality of this annular eclipse (which peaked at something like 98% where I was, which explain why it's still very bright at this time).

Image
Roy wrote: Sun Oct 01, 2023 7:18 pm Water would be needed for the tree. Water would produce an oasis, not just one tree growing out of sand dunes. I think the tree is staged, part of another photograph. For Ann’s effect as stated.
Actually you can find many of these trees (called Ghaf trees) in some places of this desert. There was also a small village nearby and a few camel farms, so there must have been some water underground indeed. This tree was actually surrounded by small bushes which are hidden by the small dunes in the foreground, and we even discovered some kind of desert mushrooms there. This one was particularly exceptionnal due to its location, and I spent two sunrises before the eclipse to "rehearse" for the D day, so I have many pictures of that tree.

Image

Preparatory picture, two days before the eclipse :

Image

Here is another tree of the same species, perfect for a nap :

Image

Hope it helped ! Have a nice day everyone.
Very pretty pics! And thank you for the further explanation of the tree and surroundings. [ PS - for having only just discovered this forum, you're pretty good at composing a nicely formatted post! ]
--
"To B̬̻̋̚o̞̮̚̚l̘̲̀᷾d̫͓᷅ͩḷ̯᷁ͮȳ͙᷊͠ Go......Beyond The F͇̤i̙̖e̤̟l̡͓d͈̹s̙͚ We Know."{ʲₒʰₙNYᵈₑᵉₚ}