Washington (ANTARA) – Millions of people in the United States will have the opportunity to witness an astronomical sight on October 14 when a solar eclipse will make the moon appear to pass in front of the sun.
This solar eclipse will be visible along a path covering parts of the United States, Mexico and a number of Central and South American countries.
The following is an explanation of the type of solar eclipse that will occur and where this eclipse will be visible.
WHAT IS AN RING SOLAR ECLIPSE?
A solar eclipse occurs when the moon moves between the Earth and the sun, thereby blocking the view along the Earth’s small path of part or all of the sun’s face as it passes.
The solar eclipse that will occur on October 14 is a type of “annular solar eclipse”.
This occurs when the moon passes between the Earth and the sun when the moon is at or near its farthest point from the Earth. This type of solar eclipse does not completely obscure the face of the sun, unlike a total solar eclipse.
WHY DOES IT LOOK LIKE A RING OF FIRE?
Because the position of the moon from the Earth is further than usual during a ring solar eclipse, the moon will not completely cover the sun, but will appear as a dark disk stacked on top of the larger and brighter surface of the sun in the sky.
As a result, this eclipse will momentarily look like a ring of fire surrounding the dark disk of the moon. A total solar eclipse is scheduled to occur on April 8, 2024 over Mexico, the United States and Canada.
WHERE WILL THE RING ECLIPSE BE VISIBLE AND WHAT WILL ITS PATH LIKE?
According to the United States space agency, NASA, the path in the United States that will be the site of maximum obscuration of the sun on October 14, passes through several parts of a number of states starting at 09:13 PDT (19:13 WIB) in Oregon, then California, Nevada , Utah, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas.
The path then crosses parts of Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Colombia and Brazil before ending at sunset over the Atlantic Ocean.
People in parts of North America, Central America, and South America will be able to see less sunlight, but it will still be an impressive sight.
HOW ARE THE EARTH, MOON AND SUN?
The moon will almost cover the surface of the sun, as seen from Earth, simply because the moon is actually much less distant from the sun, much closer to our planet.
The diameter of the moon is 3,476 km, much smaller than the diameter of the sun which reaches 1.4 million km, while the diameter of the Earth is 12,742 km.
WHAT IS THE SAFE WAY TO VIEW A SOLAR ECLIPSE?
Experts warn that it is unsafe to look directly at the bright sun without using special eye protection designed for looking at the sun, because there is a risk of eye injury.
The sun is never completely covered by the moon during an annular solar eclipse, so it is unsafe to look directly at the moon without eye protection.
Viewing a solar eclipse through a camera lens, binoculars or telescope without using a special solar filter can cause serious eye injuries.
Experts advise people to always use protective sun glasses or a safe handheld sun detector whenever there is an annular solar eclipse. Regular sunglasses are not safe for viewing the sun during an eclipse.
HOW ARE SOLAR ECLIPSES DISTINGUISHED FROM MOON ECLIPSES?
A lunar eclipse occurs when the Earth comes between the moon and the sun and our planet’s shadow covers the surface of the moon. This makes the moon look dim when seen from Earth, sometimes having a reddish color. A lunar eclipse is visible from half the Earth, a much wider area than a solar eclipse.
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