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Asia, Arabian Peninsula, Philippines see decade's final solar eclipse

By Clyde Hughes
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Asia, Arabian Peninsula, Philippines see decade's final solar eclipse
The "ring of fire" solar eclipse is seen Thursday from Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Photo by Ali Haider/EPA-EFE

Dec. 26 (UPI) -- The sun and moon gave the Earth its final solar eclipse of the 2010s on Thursday, which was seen across parts of Indonesia, southern India, Oman and Saudi Arabia.

The "Ring of Fire" annular eclipse occurred when the moon passed in front of the sun, leaving a small ring of light around the moon's shadow. The Earth typically sees about two solar eclipses each year when the Earth is covered partly or completely by the shadow of the moon.

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Watchers donned protective solar-filtered glasses in Malaysia and crowds gathered across the Arabian Peninsula and in Jakarta, Indonesia, and Singapore to see the event.

The eclipse lasted for the longest period of time just off the Indonesian island of Pulau Gin Besar. It was also visible across Indonesia's Sumatra and Sarawak, in Singapore and from just south of General Santos City in the Philippines.

An annular eclipse occurs when the moon isn't near enough to the Earth to completely hide the sun, and they are typically only visible along a narrow swath of land. Thursday's was just 75 miles wide.

The next solar eclipse, another annular eclipse, will be seen June 21 and will be visible across central Africa, parts of the Middle East, northern India and China. The next total solar eclipse will come on Dec. 14, 2020, and will be visible from southwestern Africa, Antarctica, southern Chile and Argentina.

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