May 25, Fri. 14:30 - 15:00 (UTC) etc.
Rare type of solar eclipse observed across Japan
People in many parts of Japan, especially along the Pacific coast, looked skyward on May 21st, to catch a glimpse of an annular solar eclipse. It was the first time in 932 years that such an event was visible across a wide area.
The solar spectacle was an important occasion for astronomers because it included a phenomenon known as "Baily's beads." Scientists across the country took the opportunity to get exact measurements of the size of the Sun.
Technology rises to new heights in Tokyo Sky Tree
The world's tallest tower, Tokyo Sky Tree, opened on May 22nd. 220,000 people visited the 634-meter structure and its adjacent facilities on the first day. The tower is expected to have a significant economic impact on its neighborhood.
Traditional Japanese stylistic elements were incorporated in the design, along with contemporary construction techniques. The outer wall is made of 37,000 steel pipes, assembled in a way that avoids even less than a millimeter of misalignment. The center pillar is modeled on the pillar of the five-story wooden pagoda of Horyuji Temple, to allow the tower to withstand earthquakes. The technology employed also includes modern approaches to illumination, helping draw still more attention to the new landmark.
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