World Stamps

Aussie stamps released ahead of rare eclipse

May 3, 2023, 8 AM
Three types of solar eclipses are represented on Australian stamps issued April 11: annular, total and partial. Shown is the souvenir sheet of three.

By Molly Goad

Australia Post issued a set of three $1.20 solar eclipse stamp designs on April 11.

A solar eclipse is viewable when the moon passes between the sun and Earth, and the different types of eclipses are represented on the new stamps.

The first stamp in Australia’s Solar Eclipses set represents an annular solar eclipse. This celestial event occurs when the moon is at its farthest point from Earth in its elliptical orbit. As a result, the sun appears as a burning ring around the moon’s circumference.

The second design illustrates a total eclipse, when the moon completely blocks the sun, leaving only the hazy white corona visible.

The third design shows a partial eclipse, which occurs when the moon doesn’t completely block the sun so that some direct rays of sunlight reach the observer.

Australia Post timed the release of the stamps with the rare hybrid solar eclipse occurring on April 20 and viewable from the Exmouth Peninsula in Western Australia for 62 seconds. During a hybrid eclipse, an annular eclipse becomes a total eclipse and then returns to an annularity.

Australia’s Solar Eclipses stamps are available in different formats: three sheets of 50, a booklet of 10 (four of the Annular Solar Eclipse stamp and three each of the other two), and a souvenir sheet with the three stamps se-tenant.

Related products include maxicards (set of three), first-day covers for the stamps and the souvenir sheet, and a stamp pack with all three stamps and the souvenir sheet presented in a high-quality folder.

For more information, visit Australia Post’s online store.

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