Global Communication and Science programme

Penang-BridgeImage: Jordan Lye Photography

Our programme uses solar eclipses to connect students from different countries and different disciplines, and help them think more deeply about language, science and working across borders.

There are three reasons why we use solar eclipses as our theme:

  • They provide unique teachable moments
  • They are powerful shared experiences
  • They are truly global events.

We organise on-site workshops, seminars and other educational events. We also run online activities such as SkypeRead, a cross-border teambuilding activity where students from different countries do a read-through of a movie script.

US 2017
Partners: North Platte Bulletin; A to Z Books

Image: Neil Pitts

On August 21st 2017 a total solar eclipse will cross the USA from Oregon to South Carolina. Together with the North Platte Bulletin and A to Z Books, we’re running a creative-writing competition called Science + Stories for children in west central Nebraska.

Angola 2017
Lead sponsor:
Eclipse glasses sponsor: NCR Angola

On February 26th 2017 an annular solar eclipse swept across southern South America and central Africa. We organised a series of educational events at the Instituto Superior de Ciências de Educação (ISCED) in Huambo, Angola, including a live broadcast with Slooh. We’re extremely grateful to our lead sponsor for this project, the wonderful


We’d also like to say a huge thank you to our eclipse glasses sponsor NCR Angola, plus the Angolan Ministry of Higher Education, and the Provincial Government of Huambo.


Indonesia 2016
Sponsored by Garuda Indonesia


We were at Tadulako University, on the island of Sulawesi, for the March 9th 2016 total solar eclipse across Indonesia. We organised a cross-border collaboration with students at Western Kentucky University in the US for an experiment to study the solar corona. This project was generously sponsored by Garuda Indonesia.


Recent and forthcoming eclipses

In a total eclipse, the moon covers the whole of the sun, and the solar corona (the sun’s upper atmosphere) becomes visible. In an annular eclipse, the moon is further away from the earth and cannot cover the sun completely – the result is a ‘ring of fire’ around the moon. (The word ‘annular’ comes from the French annulaire, which means ring-shaped.)

Image: NASA

The total and annular phases of an eclipse can only be seen along a very narrow path, which is marked by two blue lines (the northern and southern path limits) in the following interactive NASA maps.



NEVER look at the sun with the naked eye. Even if the sun is 99% covered by the moon, the remaining sunlight is extremely bright and can cause permanent damage to the eye. (The only time it is safe to view an eclipse with the naked eye is during the few short minutes or seconds of totality during a total eclipse.)