First record of a solar eclipse dates back more than 3,000 years, plus more facts and figures ahead of Monday’s event
Monday’s solar eclipse is expected to be the most-watched eclipse in history. Here’s a look at what Californians will be able to observe, and some more facts and figures about Earth, the sun and our solar system.
What we will see
Californians will see a partial eclipse of about 69 percent. The sun will rise at 6:38 a.m. Aug. 21, with the effects of the partial solar eclipse visible by the time most people get to work.
The forecast for inland areas of Southern California is clear, however, the National Weather Service says it will be difficult to see from some areas along the coast.
The duration is expected to be 2 hours, 32 minutes, 2 seconds.
NASA’s full coverage of the solar eclipse is here.
Protect your eyes
If you haven’t purchased eclipse viewers yet, we suggest manufacturers or vendors that have been approved by the American Astronomical Society or International Organization for Standardization. Looking at the sun with substandard glasses may cause permanent damage to your eyes.
NASA will post selfies of your eclipse pictures if you text them with a short sentence to #EclipseSelfie.
You can download or print NASA’s pinhole projectors here.
Views on Earth
The first known records of humans seeing an eclipse date back more than 3,000 years, but people did not begin to understand that Earth revolved around the sun until the 1600s.
The fact that NASA has predicted the time, duration and exact path of this eclipse shows the some of the regularity of the universe that we have come to understand. Astronomers have predicted other total eclipses for the next 100 years, with the next total solar eclipse visible in North America on April 8, 2024.
You can visit NASA.com for livestream coverage on Aug. 21.
Here’s a list of solar and lunar eclipses in the future.
When you hear the word satellite it might conjure images of high-tech space gadgets, but the moon is Earth’s only natural satellite.
After Aug. 21 the next total eclipse will be a lunar eclipse on Jan. 31, 2018.
The first artificial satellite was put into orbit in 1957 by the Soviet Union, and about 6,000 more have followed.
Our moon is the fifth- largest in the solar system.
How many moons do other planets have?
Star of the show
Our sun is one of more than 200 billion stars in the Milky Way galaxy. Here are some other things to consider while our attention is turned to it:
You can learn about research of the sun at the Big Bear Solar Observatory here.
The light you are seeing from the sun takes about 8 minutes, 20 seconds to travel to Earth.
In two hours the average solar flare releases enough energy to power the U.S. for 10,000 years.
The sun rotates on its axis approximately once every 27 Earth days.
During a single second, the sun converts 4 million tons of matter into pure energy.
If we were to journey to the sun, here’s the path we would take:
Sources: NASA, Spaceweather.com, Space.com, NOAA, Griffith Observatory
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