Things to Know About the Total Solar Eclipse of August 21, 2017:
"Day turns to night" for 2 minutes.
This is the first with a path of totality crossing the USA's Pacific coast and Atlantic coast since 1918!
The last total solar eclipse in the Continental USA was February 26, 1979.
The Total Solar Eclipse of August 21, 2017 is something you don't want to miss . . . and will never forget!
Eye Safety: The Sun can be viewed safely with the bare eye during a total eclipse ONLY when the Moon completely covers the disk of the Sun. It is NEVER safe to look at the partial phases of a total solar eclipse without the proper equipment and techniques. Even when most of the Sun is obscured during the partial phases of a solar eclipse, the remaining sliver of Sun is still intense enough to cause permanent eye damage! Look here for safety tips and ideas. Be smart - Permanant damage or Blindness is possible - even if just for a few seconds.
First Contact: The moment when the partial phase of an eclipse begins.
Second Contact: The instant when the total phase of an eclipse begins.
Third Contact: The instant when the total phase of an eclipse ends.
Fourth Contact: The instant when the partial phase of an eclipse ends.
Total Eclipse: A solar eclipse in which the Moon's umbral shadow (darkest part of the Moon's shadow) traverses Earth. The Moon is close enough to Earth to completely cover the Sun. During the maximum phase of a total eclipse, the Sun is completely blocked Moon.
Totality: The maximum phase of a total eclipse during which the Moon's disk completely covers the Sun. Totality is the period between second and third contact during a total eclipse. It can last from a fraction of a second to a maximum of just under 8 seconds, depending where you are.
The total eclipse path of August 21, 2017 in the USA.
The only way to see the total eclipse is you are within the path of totality shaded in pink on our map. To see a total eclipse lasting for a decent length of time, you want to be towards the middle (blue line) of this path. Along the outside edges, the duration will be quite short.
Where you are in the country will impact your view as well. The shortest duration will be on the West Coast, where the eclipse will last about 2 minutes on the centre of the path of totality. The longest eclipse - near Carbondale, IL, will give you about 40 additional seconds of totality.
BUT weather is a huge factor. Clouds will ruin your total eclipse experience - so look for clear skies in the forecast when planning your viewing city.
Kansas, Missouri, Illinois
Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina
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