April 2024 Total Solar Eclipse: Key Facts

April 2024 Total Solar Eclipse: Key Facts

This year, millions of Americans will be able to witness a solar eclipse. Here are the locations and viewing instructions for the April 8, 2024, total solar eclipse.

The total solar eclipse is happening when?

The Pacific coast of Mexico will see the next complete solar eclipse on April 8, 2024, beginning at approximately 11:07 a.m. PDT. It will subsequently depart mainland North America at 5:19 p.m., having crossed portions of the United States and entered Canada.

When the moon moves in front of the sun and blocks its light, it creates a solar eclipse. A partial solar eclipse happens when the moon partially obscures the sun; a total solar eclipse, on the other hand, is when the moon completely obscures the sun’s light, according to NASA.

The moon will shade Earth during a total solar eclipse while our planet revolves. The area where the entire solar eclipse may be seen is known as the path of totality.

The next total solar eclipse that may be seen from the United States will be on August 23, 2044, following this year’s total solar eclipse on April 8. August 2017 saw the most recent total solar eclipse that the United States could see; it was the first to cross the whole continent in almost a century.

On October 14, 2023, some areas of the United States were able to see an annular solar eclipse, however the sun was not completely obscured, according per NASA.

Where will it be possible to see the total solar eclipse?

NASA estimates that 31.6 million people reside inside the 200-mile path of totality, which is the area where the total solar eclipse will be seen. It is believed that 12 million individuals saw the total solar eclipse in 2017.

Around 1:40 p.m. local time, southern Texas will be able to witness the entire complete eclipse after it passes over Mexico in the early afternoon. The total eclipse will begin to appear in certain areas of Oklahoma around 1:45 p.m., moving on to Arkansas at approximately 1:51 p.m. and southeast Missouri at approximately 1:56 p.m.

Around 2:00 p.m., the total eclipse will pass over Illinois, Kentucky, and Indiana; it will pass over Ohio at 3:13 p.m.
The total eclipse will then begin to appear in some areas of Pennsylvania at 3:16 p.m., and it will appear in some areas of northwest New York at 3:18 p.m.

After that, it will pass across portions of Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire before arriving in Canada at 4:25 p.m.

Path of the total solar eclipse on a map

The eclipse’s course from Mexico through numerous US states and into northeastern Canada is depicted on a map made by NASA.
It will start to eclipse at approximately 11:07 a.m. PDT. After then, it will move northeast, through many US states, and into Canada. At 5:19 p.m., it will depart from continental North America.

How can the solar eclipse be seen safely?

To protect your eyes from harm when the moon obscures part of the sun, wear protective eclipse glasses. It is safe to stare at the sun with your eyes only when it is completely covered; however, portions of the sun will be visible both before and after the eclipse’s brief totality.

According to NASA, eclipse glasses are not the same as sunglasses; they are a thousand times darker and have to meet the international safety standard ISO 12312-2. A list of authorized sun viewers is available from the American Astronomical Society.

Even with eclipse glasses on, NASA advises against viewing the eclipse using a telescope, binoculars, or camera lens. Serious eye damage can result from sun radiation that burn through the lens.

Sanchita Patil

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