Solar Eclipse Maestro Icon

Baily’s Beads Animation Window

The window displays the Baily’s beads animation during the eclipse as seen from your location. The animation enables you to simulate the Baily’s beads and view their position and shape.

  1. Choose Display > Baily’s Beads Animation…
    Eclipse Baily Bead Animation Window

    Eclipse Baily Bead Animation Contextual Menu
Eclipse contact times, magnitude and duration of totality or annularity all depend on the angular diameters and relative velocities of the Moon and Sun. The Moon exhibits an irregular limb when seen in profile, due to its surface topography. Most eclipse calculations assume some mean radius that averages high mountain peaks and low valleys along the Moon’s rugged limb. Kaguya and Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter probe data or Watts charts are used for higher accuracy in those calculations. Watts charts are nowadays obsolete and shouldn’t be used anymore. The radial scale of the limb profile in the figure is exaggerated so that the true limb’s departure from the mean lunar limb is readily apparent.
The mean limb with respect to the center of figure of Kaguya’s, LRO’s or Watts’ data is shown as a turquoise dashed line. The position angles of second and third contacts are clearly marked with orange and green arrows (dotted for corrected contacts) along with the north pole of the Moon’s axis of rotation in blue, the north pole of the Sun’s axis of rotation in yellow and the observer’s zenith at mid-totality in mauve.

A contextual menu, that can be invoked with a right click, will let you select various options:
  • Orientation - Select the diagram orientation either from Celestial North Up, Zenith Up or Solar North Up. Celestial North Up by default.
  • Continue Animation - Play the animation that was stopped.
  • Stop Animation - Halt the running animation.
  • Replay Animation - Start the animation from the beginning.
  • Play Animation in Loop - When the animation is finished, it will be restarted from the beginning.
  • Jump from 2nd to 3rd Contact - Allow the animation to jump from second contact to third without including the whole totality or annularity.
  • Save As QuickTime Animation… - Lets you create a QuickTime movie containing the animation. The animation is created by a background task and a progression window is displayed.
  • Window Transparency - The window can be made more or less opaque.