On Wednesday, the moon will block the sun creating a total solar eclipse that will go across the Pacific Ocean from Indonesia to Hawaii. The spectacle begins on March 9 and will finish on March 8.
The day’s differences are due to the moon’s shadow will first fall on parts of the Pacific on Wednesday’s morning, local time, and then cross the international date line and appear visible on Tuesday afternoon, as reported by the New York Times.
It will depend on where the person watches the eclipse to actually see the moon engulf the sun, that is because a total solar eclipse occurs when the darkest part of the moon’s shadow, the umbra, encases part of the Earth. The excellent view will be where the umbra falls.
Palembang in Sumatra will be the first major city to see the total solar eclipse, when the moon orbits in front of the sun, at about 7:20 a.m. local time, according to the Christian Science Monitor.
“The cool thing for those who are going to be in the path of totality is that they are going to be able to see the outer atmosphere of the sun called the corona,” said C. Alex Young, a solar astrophysicist from NASA. The corona will look like flames streaming from behind the moon and is only visible from the ground during a total eclipse, he said.
The previous similar event took place over a year ago on March 20, 2015, over the far North Atlantic Ocean and parts of northern Europe. The next one will occur next year and will pass squarely over the continental United States on August 21, 2017, it will be visible from the Pacific Northwest to the Southeast.
Eye safety is of main importance
Viewers should be aware of the consequences of watching directly. During the totality phase of the eclipse, when the sun is completely blocked, people can watch it directly for a few minutes, according to an expert in the field, Fred Espenak.
But when it is beginning or ending, which is the partial eclipse, people should protect their eyes, which means not watching directly. Failure to use appropriate filtration may result in permanent eye damage or blindness, he added.
For those who are not in the astronomical event’s path, the San Francisco-based Exploratorium science museum will join NASA to present the solar eclipse live starting at 8 p.m. Eastern Time.
Source: The New York Times