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1919 Solar eclipse

1919 Solar eclipse

C047/2643

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100.0 MB (3.2 MB compressed)

7656 x 4565 pixels

64.8 x 38.6 cm ⏐ 25.5 x 15.2 in (300dpi)

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Credit

EUROPEAN SOUTHERN OBSERVATORY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY EUROPEAN SOUTHERN OBSERVATORY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Restrictions

This image may not be used by or to promote the arms, nuclear power or tobacco industries or any religious organisation, or in any discriminatory way, or to imply the endorsement by ESO of any product, service or activity.

Caption

1919 solar eclipse. The original image on glass photographic plate produced by the British astronomers Arthur Eddington (1882-1944) and Andrew Crommelin (1865-1939) has been processed here with modern techniques. These include image restoration, noise reduction and removal of artefacts. The image reveals details in the solar corona, a giant prominence emerging from the upper right part of the Sun, and stars in the constellation of Taurus that were used to confirm Einstein's general relativity predictions. Eddington and Crommelin travelled to locations at which the eclipse would be total, Eddington to West Africa and Crommelin to the Brazilian town of Sobral. By measuring the positions of stars during the eclipse and comparing them to their positions at night, when the sun is not in the field of view, it was possible to determine that their light rays were bent while passing close to the Sun. A key observational test of Einstein's theory of relativity.

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