Weather reports and authorities have informed U.S. citizens to get ready for the Great American Solar eclipse in 2017. According to their calculations, the total solar eclipse is due to take place on August 21, 2017 and will peak while above the Southern states.
Total solar eclipses are rare phenomena that usually occur when the Moon comes between the Sun and the Earth. The solar eclipse is caused by the shadow of the Moon which blocks the Sun and prevents its light from becoming visible.
However, the most frequent eclipses are the partial ones because the shadow of the Moon is usually narrower than the surface of the Sun (167 miles). There are rare occasions when the Moon finally manages to steal the spotlight, but such moments occur at approximately 375 years.
Americans haven’t had a total solar eclipse in a long time, which makes the Great American Solar eclipse in 2017 all the more interesting. The last time the Sun was totally shadowed by the Moon was on February 28, 1979, when its visibility was partially hindered by the presence of occasional clouds.
Things will be a lot better in 2017 because the Great American Solar eclipse will take place during the summer months and there won’t be any barriers hindering its visibility. Dedicated websites have already been created since many people are expected to attend the event. NASA, too, has created a special page on their official website showcasing the trajectory of the Sun during the total solar eclipse and other useful information for the event.
The Sun will be above the Southern states (Kansas, Charleston, Nashville, and Greenville) during its peak moments and it will last approximately 2 minutes, scientists have explained. The United States Naval Observatory thinks many U.S. and non-U.S. citizens will wish to take part in the unique astronomical phenomenon; therefore, several recommendations have been issued for them.
Based on lastest suggestions, people should avoid to stare directly into the Sun even when fully covered by the shadow of the Moon. Binoculars and telescopes are not recommended, either because they do not have the special UVA/UVB filter that protects the eye. Special sunglasses will be created in occasion of the event and U.S. citizens are advised to use them to avoid corneal lesions.
With or without the protecting UVA/UVB filter make sure you don’t make the same mistake roosters and dogs make. Don’t go to sleep when the Sun is shadowed by the Moon and miss the unique opportunity of watching the Great American Solar eclipse.
Image source: www.pixabay.com
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