The worldly expected solar eclipse on 9th March 2016 was disturbed by tiny clouds in Maba of Halmahera Island. Half an hour before the totality was even heavy rain. But even if the view wasn’t as clear as everybody wanted at the place, eventually we were witnesses of spectacular show anyway. The phenomenon took my breath away! One of the most amazing part was, of course, the diamond ring just before the total eclipse started. Magnificent pink prominence was visible even by naked eyes through the clouds a few seconds before the totality started. Peter Aniol, the great German astrophotographer and eclipse chaser, told me that such a huge prominence during a solar eclipse was not visible since 1991! Thank all the great, helpful, friendly and incredibly peaceful people of Maba, especially Mr. Hardi and our driver Is! And special thanks belong to an Amsterdam couple and my friend Jan Sladecek, who decided for spontaneous and wild tracking of a hole in the clouds! The image is resultant of multi-exposures stacking to show the view as natural as possible. This is what I saw with my eyes through a small binoculars. Used Canon 6D Baader IR modified, 500/f8, ISO 100; 1/2000 s, 2×1/60 s, 2×1/2 s and 2×2 s exposures and Canon 350 (Jan Sladecek), 200/4, ISO 100, 1/60 s. Tracked on Vixen mount (mine images) and from tripod (Jan Sladecek).
I would like to acknowledge support for the eclipse expedition to Indonesia which was provided by NSF grants AGS-1144913 and AGS-1255894, NASA grant NNX13AG11G to PI Shadia R. Habbal of the Institute for Astronomy, the University of Hawaii, and the use of the local government building in Maba, with help from Xavier Jubier, without whom this image would not have been made possible.