Washington D.C. [USA], August 19, 2017: Hold your breath to relish the most spectacular celestial dance. This has not happened in 99 years in the USA. The sun and the moon would sketch an arc by staging a shadow dance from east coast to the west.
The most remarkable date i.e., 21 August 2017, for which we have been impatiently waiting for almost a century now, is about to arrive.
The total solar eclipse in the United States of America is about to happen. Genevieve De Messieres, Astronomy Education Program Manager at Air and Space Museum calls this month as solar eclipse, an amazing phenomenon.
WHAT MAKES THIS SOLAR ECLIPSE SO SPECIAL?
A solar eclipse occurs when a new moon moves between the earth and the sun, hindering some or all of the sun’s rays from reaching the earth.As a consequence of this celestial movement, there are four kinds of the solar eclipse that are formed. When the moon eclipses the sun, it casts two types of shadow on earth, a small darker shadow i.e., Umbra and a large darker shadow i.e., Penumbra. The Total solar eclipse can be seen in Umbra region and a partial solar eclipse in Penumbra region. The path of totality is the region where a total solar eclipse can be seen.
The most exciting news is that all the 50 states of the USA will either witness a total solar eclipse and a partial solar eclipse. A narrow strip of the country more than 110 Km wide through 14 states will experience a total eclipse. And, the rest of the country will witness a partial solar eclipse.
If you wish to know the exact regions of both the eclipse, then follow this link- Eclipse 2017
If you are in Umbra region, then pre-total solar eclipse, do not forget to astound yourself from incredible experience of glimpsing Baily’s Beads and the Diamond Ring.
Just before the total solar eclipse, when the moon has almost fully covered the sun and the sunlight still continues to peep through the valleys and mountains on the edge of the moon, at this point, you can see the light in the form of beads. These beads are known as Baily’s Beads.
Finally, the movement for which sky watchers are eagerly waiting for, the formation of the Diamond Ring, which is formed for few mini-seconds when a single bead of light remains in the sky. Once, the diamond ring disappears, the total solar eclipse is achieved.
INTERESTING FACT ABOUT THE ECLIPSE: Have you ever wondered, that the moon which is 400 times smaller in size than that of the sun, can fully cover it? The answer to this question is an interesting fact, by cosmic chance, the sun is 400 times wider than the moon, but it is also 400 times farther than the moon. Due to which, both of these celestial bodies appear the same size when watched from the earth.
FUN LOVING WAYS TO VIEW SOLAR ECLIPSE
Don’t even think of watching solar eclipse with your bare eyes, it may lead to a lost eye sight. If you are in Washington D.C., you may go to Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum(NASM), they are setting up various viewing locations by putting up a telescope in these locations.
If you can not make up to these locations, then may preferable buy only certified eclipse watching glass. NASM is also distributing these glasses. You may get one for yourself.
Caution: After the eclipse, do not remove your glasses while watching towards the sky, it may give your eyes a burning sensation. First, look at the ground and then remove the glasses.
If somehow, you do not get these glasses, then are some interesting ways to view an eclipse. If you wish to enjoy these ways, then do follow each instruction properly.
TOP 10 DESTINATIONS TO WITNESS THE SPECTACULAR TOTAL SOLAR ECLIPSE
This is the territory where the total solar eclipse will occur first at 10:19 a.m. PDT and would last for 2 minutes and 4 seconds.
Snake River Valley, Idaho
Here, the timing for the total solar eclipse to begin is 11:33 a.m. MDT and it would last long for 2 minutes and 18 seconds.
Here, the timing for the total solar eclipse to begin is 11:42 a.m. MDT and it would last long for 2 minutes and 18 seconds.
Sandhills of western Nebraska
Here, the timing for the total solar eclipse to begin is 11:49 a.m. MDT and it would last long for 2 minutes and 30 seconds.
St. Joseph, Missouri
Here, the timing for the total solar eclipse to begin is 1:06 p.m. CDT and it would last long for 2 minutes and 39 seconds.
Here, the timing for the total solar eclipse to begin is 1:20 p.m. CDT and would last long for 2 minutes and 41.6 seconds.
Here, the timing for the total solar eclipse to begin is 1:24 p.m. CDT and it would last long for 2 minutes and 41.2 seconds.
Here, the timing for the total solar eclipse to begin is 1:27 p.m. CDT and it would last long for 1 minute and 57 seconds.
Great Smokey Mountains, Natl.Park
Here, the timing for the total solar eclipse to begin is 2:35 p.m. EDT and it would last long for 1 minute and 17 seconds.
Columbia, South Carolina
Here, the timing for the total solar eclipse to begin is 2:43 p.m. EDT and it would last long for 2 minutes and 30 seconds.
Moreover, NASA is also organizing various fun-filled activities at various destinations. If you wish to know about it and indulge your self in these events, then go this link- Eclipse 2017 NASA Event Locations
MAKE PROPER RESERVATIONS BEFORE YOU LEAVE
Before you pack your bags, do make proper arrangements for your stay. It would be difficult to get on the spot reservation on 21 August 2017. So, plan in advance. Also, be prepared for the traffic jams in advance.
This link would demonstrate the statistics about the population access and estimated visitations on the eclipse day- greatamericaneclipse.com/statistics
CAUTION: Avoid driving during the eclipse time as you experience the worst driving experience of your life. This may also affect your eyes.
Another amazing Fact: You will be surprised to know that though total solar eclipse happens somewhere on earth every year at any given point on earth experience this only once in every 400 years.
So, what are you waiting for? Hurry Up! Plan ahead to watch out nature’s most magnificent and spectacular happening.
–prepared by a Shivani Chowdhary of NewsGram. Twitter @cshivani31