A total eclipse of the Sun occurred on Monday 26 February, 1979 UT, with maximum eclipse at 16:54 UT. A dramatic total eclipse plunged the Sun into darkness for 2 minutes and 49 seconds at maximum, creating an amazing spectacle for observers in a very broad path, 298 km wide at maximum.

The total eclipse lasted for 2 minutes and 49 seconds. Maximum eclipse was at 16:54:16 UT.

During this eclipse the Sun was 0.538° in apparent diameter, 1.0% larger than average. The Moon was just a day past perigee, making it very large. At the start and end of the eclipse the Moon was 0.555°, and at maximum eclipse 0.559°, which is 5.4% larger than average; hence it covered the Sun, making this a total eclipse. The statistics page has information on the ranges of the sizes of the Sun and Moon.

Interactive Map

This map shows the visibility of the eclipse. The shaded area saw the total solar eclipse; however, near the edges of this area, the eclipse was very short. The bold line shows the centre of the path, where the eclipse lasted longest.

Use the zoom controls to zoom in and out; hover your mouse over any point on the centreline to see the time and duration of the eclipse at that point. You can pan and zoom the map to see detail for any part of the eclipse path.

Overview Map

This map sourced from NASA's Eclipse Web Site shows the visibility of the total solar eclipse. It also shows the broader area in which a partial eclipse was seen. (Click on it for the full-sized version.)

Eclipse Season and Saros Series

This eclipse season contains 2 eclipses:

This was the 59th eclipse in solar Saros series 120.The surrounding eclipses in this Saros series are:

Eclipse Parameters

UT Date/time (max) 16:54:16 on 26 Feb UT TDT Date/time (max) 16:55:06 on 26 Feb TDT
Saros Series 120 Number in Series 58
Penumbral Magnitiude Central Magnitiude 1.0391
Gamma 0.8981 Path Width (km) 298
Delta T 0m50s Error ± 0m00s (95%)
Penumbral Duration Partial Duration
Total Duration 2m49s
Partial Rating Total Rating
Sun Distance 148136924 km (21.5%) Moon Distance 358546 km (4.3%)
Sun Diameter 0.538° Moon Diameter 0.555° - 0.559°
Perigee 22:18 on 25 Feb UT Apogee 10:22 on 10 Mar UT

Note that while all dates and times on this site (except where noted) are in UT, which is within a second of civil time, the dates and times shown in NASA's eclipse listings are in the TDT timescale.

The Sun and Moon distances are shown in km, and as a percentage of their minimum - maximum distances; hence 0% is the closest possible (Earth's perihelion, or the Moon's closest possible perigee) and 100% is the farthest (aphelion, the farthest apogee). The statistics page has information on the ranges of sizes of the Sun and Moon.

Data last updated: 2015-06-21 22:11:46 UTC.