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Who are the lucky ones who get to see the total solar eclipse?

Discussion in 'GENERAL DISCUSSION' started by Mben, Aug 20, 2017.

  1. Mben

    Mben No Deposit Forum Administrator Staff Member

    I'm bummed. I only get a partial here in southern Arizona.

    On Monday, the sun will disappear — for a short time — across America.

    For a brief moment, day will turn to night. Animals big and small will go into their nighttime routines. Stars and planets will be visible, and streetlights will turn on in the middle of the day.

    Here are some of the things you should know about the total solar eclipse happening August 21.

    Don’t miss it! This is rare, says NASA

    “The hair on the back of your neck is going to stand up, and you are going to feel different things as the eclipse reaches totality. It’s been described as peaceful, spiritual, exhilarating, shocking,” said Brian Carlstrom, deputy associate director of the National Park Service Natural Resource Stewardship and Science Directorate.

    According to NASA, experiencing a total solar eclipse where you live happens about once in 375 years. So, unless modern medicine advances considerably in the next few years, you might not make it to the next one.

    The last time anyone in the United States witnessed a total solar eclipse was almost 40 years ago, on February 26, 1979. It’s been even longer — 99 years — since a total solar eclipse crossed the country from the Pacific to the Atlantic. The total eclipse on June 8, 1918, passed from Washington to Florida.

    You can set your clock to it, even to the precise second.

    Make your plans now. If you are reading this at work and want to ask for the day off, you will soon find that all of your science geek colleagues have already asked off for this random Monday in August. If you can’t manage to convey to your boss that no one else will be doing business and you can’t get the day off, block out your calendar for an outdoor meeting or a long lunch

    Even if you live in New York, Los Angeles, Houston, Chicago or Atlanta, you will go slightly dark. In fact, all of North America will be able to see a partial eclipse.

    Do you have to be in ‘totality’?

    To see “totality,” in which the moon completely blocks the sun, you will need to be inside the narrow swath — about 70 miles wide — of the moon’s shadow. The path will stretch from the Oregon coast to the South Carolina coast, with 12 states in between.

    Nearly 12.2 million Americans live in the path of totality, but NASA predicts that millions more will visit it that day. “About 200 million people (a little less than 2⁄3 the nation’s population) live within one day’s drive of the path of this total eclipse,” the agency said.

    “This will be like Woodstock 200 times over — but across the whole country,” said Alex Young, solar scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.

    The Federal Highway Administration is calling this a “planned special event for which there has been no recent precedent in the United States.”

    It expects heavy traffic before and after the eclipse along the path of totality. The agency suggests getting to your chosen spot hours before, if not the day before. The one thing you don’t want to do is come up short of totality.

    “This is one of those rare events where being close is not good enough,” said J. Kelly Beatty, senior editor of Sky & Telescope. “A sun that’s 99% covered is vastly different than the one that’s 100% covered. Like I say to people, it’s like being on a first date versus being on your wedding night.”

    Most astronomers have the same advice: Get to the path of totality, because you won’t want to miss this.

    “I know it’s a Monday and for some parts of the country a school day, and it may be inconvenient or cost more than you want, but it really should be a priority,” said David Baron, author of the book “American Eclipse.” “The general impression is, if you live somewhere with a 90% partial eclipse, that’s good enough. Absolutely not. It’s only during a total solar eclipse that you can take off your eclipse glasses, look up where the sun should be with your naked eye and see a sky you’ve never seen before.”

    A fast-moving shadow

    During a total solar eclipse, the moon and the sun both appear to be about the same size from the ground. According to NASA, this is a “celestial coincidence,” as the sun is about 400 times wider than the moon and about 400 times farther away.

    Then, it is just basic geometry. When the Earth, moon and sun line up just right, the moon blocks the sun’s entire surface, creating the total eclipse.

    If you happened to be sitting on the moon facing Earth, it would look just like the moon is casting a dark circular shadow — called the umbra — on the Earth. This shadow will move across the United States from west to east, but don’t think about trying to keep up with it.

    Unless you are flying a fighter jet, you won’t be able to follow the shadow, which will be traveling at almost 3,000 miles per hour when it enters the US and then slow to nearly 1,500 mph when it traverses South Carolina.

    A larger and fainter shadow called the penumbra will surround the inner shadow. This is what most people will experience — the partial eclipse.

    Precision timing

    The lunar shadow first crosses the West Coast at 9:05 a.m. PDT.

    People in Lincoln City, Oregon, will be the first in the continental United States to see the total solar eclipse, beginning at 10:15 a.m. PDT.

    A total solar eclipse can sometimes take as long as 7½ minutes. The longest eclipse duration for this event will occur in Carbondale, Illinois, and will clock in at two minutes, 43 seconds, beginning at 1:20 p.m. CDT.

    Eventually, all good things must come to an end, and the lunar shadow will depart the East Coast at 4:09 p.m. EDT.

    This will be the last total solar eclipse in the United States until April 4, 2024.

    It’s not quite as long of a wait as you might have thought, but it won’t stretch the width of the country. Instead, it will move from Mexico to Maine and then traverse New Brunswick and Newfoundland.

    For another eclipse similar to this year’s, one that moves from coast to coast, you will have to wait until August 12, 2045.
  2. dmnitdava

    dmnitdava WELL KNOWN MEMBER

    i am lucky one i guess caus ei live round in central illinois bout 15 mins from the capital n just a little bit north of carbondale . illinis so i am super excited to atleas get to see partial eclipse i love the cosmos and carl sagan for shearing teaching and giving us some much to think about below is his pale blue dot speach/poem/quotes i hope everyone enjoys and goodluck to all in all matter of life :) ....................................
    From this distant vantage point, the Earth might not seem of any particular interest. But for us, it’s different. Look again at that dot. That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives.

    The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every “superstar,” every “supreme leader,” every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there – on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

    The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors, so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light.

    Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand. It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character building experience.

    There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we’ve ever known.

    Carl Sagan
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  3. PMM

    PMM No Deposit Forum Moderator Staff Member

    Partial eclipse for me here in Michigan. 2:24pm.
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  4. krystalkitty

    krystalkitty Greedy Gambler

    Probaby not for me. Maybe a partial here in MN.
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  5. Mben

    Mben No Deposit Forum Administrator Staff Member

    After looking at this map, I all three of you will see a fuller eclipse than I will. Enjoy it!

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  6. PSP

    PSP Ruler of Western Civilization's Geeky Nerds

    My 60.8% has come and gone - not very exciting.
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  7. Mben

    Mben No Deposit Forum Administrator Staff Member

    My 59% has come and gone also. I was able to see it with a neighbor's welding shield. It was very cool even if just a partial.
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  8. PMM

    PMM No Deposit Forum Moderator Staff Member

    My partial eclipse has come and gone. ZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
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  9. PSP

    PSP Ruler of Western Civilization's Geeky Nerds

    In the end, it's really only a shadow...
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  10. krystalkitty

    krystalkitty Greedy Gambler

    Totally over cast here in MN. Saw nothing but the sun afterwards....Saw it on TV, pretty cool! Am sure would of been more fun to be where it was total:)
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  11. dmnitdava

    dmnitdava WELL KNOWN MEMBER

    bummed out it was so overcast here dint get to see nothing :(
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