Our images of the Total Solar Eclipse


French Version

"L'uranoscope de l'île de France" and the association "Les Ailes de l'Europe" joined their skills to organize a flight to observe the total solar eclipse of August 11th 1999.

What a better position for observation : a 11000 feet flying platform , over the clouds, riding the totality line.

It's possible with an IFR compliant plane ( VFR flight where prohibited by NOTAM), a machine-qualified pilot, a pertinent ground logistic and guidance, and necessary support to have the flight plan agreed (Reserved for VIP on this day, but we had no VIP).



Antonov 2 from "Les Ailes de l'Europe", registered SP-FAF in Poland.

A view to the cockpit

French Acrobatic Patrol "Patrouille de France" was present to see the event, but had to be kept grounded.

"Scientific" Team Boarding in a "cargo" plane: Martine TLOUZEAU et Jean-Paul GODARD both from Uranoscope.



A hatch, a stepladder! I was rather wise to keep myself warm

Yes you have direct view to the sky through this hole (to be kept open)

Martine testing phone with the pilot. The emergency exit on the left has been removed but is maintained close with cardboard for take-off..

Now we are...on the way.




Getting out of the clouds: a partially eclipsed sun welcomes the team.

Not really alone to watch... Commercial flight or Eclipse chasers?

Temperature : -5°C (23°F) apparent wind 120km/h (80mph): need to be covered.

Putting the head outside to film the partial phase. A polymer sheet is used as solar screen.





WAAOOOH. We'll see it!! If you want it very hard, you can get it!

View over cloud deck, stacking to climb to 11000 ft

Martine opens the emergency exit to take the first picture with her Olympus OM1 (135mm+2x, 400Asa for speed)

View from cockpit... Shadow of the propeller is visible.




Starting with partial phases. Sun is still shinning.

Clouds darken....

Feet on a staircase, Head and Shoulders outside, the webmaster makes THE movie.

With her assistant giving instructions to the pilot, Martine search for the best angle..


Strange and unreal light coming from a "coronal" sky.

Shadow coming westward.

Sky darkens. Horizon is still lighted.

Night surrounds us




Clouds "à la Cappuccino"

Totality !.....

Martine's hair is blown in front of a magnificent show...

2 minutes of ecstasy sailing over the world.



Yes we were....

…over Reims (France) on August 11th 1999.. Flight level 110.

Last shots of partial phases....

After a 2 hour flight, it's now time to film our descent and the final "Kiss-Landing"...

Photos by Martine TLOUZEAU, Jean-Paul GODARD and François GODARD.

All rights reserved for all countries. © 1999 TLOUZEAU,GODARD JP, GODARD F.

Reactions et reponses

Send us your feeling

Here are your reactions

Thanks to:


Build with IrfanView