Get Ready for Monday’s Solar Eclipse: Schedule and Duration of the Eclipse

On April 8th, a solar eclipse will sweep across North America. Millions have the extraordinary opportunity to witness day briefly turn to night as the Moon entirely blocks out the Sun for up to 4 minutes and 28 seconds.

2 mins read
Get Ready for Monday's Solar Eclipse: Schedule and Duration of the Eclipse

On Monday, April 8th, the celestial heavens will put on a breathtaking display as a total solar eclipse graces the skies over North America. This rare cosmic event, when the Moon passes directly between the Earth and the Sun, will create a striking scene of daytime darkness along its path of totality. Millions have the extraordinary opportunity to witness this awe-inspiring spectacle first-hand, but proper planning and precautions are essential to ensure a safe and unforgettable experience.

For those fortunate enough to find themselves within the path of totality, which traverses across 15 U.S. states, a small part of eastern Canada, and Mexico, the Moon will entirely block the Sun’s brilliant face for up to 4 minutes and 28 seconds, depending on the location. During these fleeting moments of total eclipse, the Sun’s corona – its ethereal outer atmosphere – will be revealed, creating a celestial crown around the darkened lunar disk.

However, for the rest of the continental United States, a partial solar eclipse will still occur, with the Moon appearing to take a bite out of the Sun’s disk. While this is an incredible sight in itself, it is crucial to remember that directly viewing the partially eclipsed Sun can cause permanent eye damage.

The only safe ways are to wear special eclipse glasses with solar filters that meet safety standards, or to construct a simple pinhole projector using cardboard, aluminum foil, and a pin to project the sun’s image onto a surface. Never look directly at the partially eclipsed sun without proper protection, even briefly. The only time it is safe to view with the naked eye is during the brief period of total eclipse when the moon fully covers the sun’s disk.

As the Moon’s silhouette slowly encroaches across the Sun’s face, keep an eye out for the “diamond ring effect” – a dazzling burst of light that will appear just before totality, created by the last rays of sunlight streaming through the Moon’s rugged terrain. During totality itself, you might even catch a glimpse of the “devil comet” Pons-Brooks, which could be visible near Jupiter in the darkened sky.

For those outside the path of totality, numerous resources are available such as NationalEclipse.com and TimeandDate.com can help plan the optimal viewing experience, including precise timing and location information. 

Below is a list of timings for some cities along the path of totality, as provided by NASA. 

  • Dallas: Partial eclipse begins at 12:23 p.m. CT and totality at 1:40 p.m.
  • Little Rock, Arkansas: Partial eclipse begins at 12:33 p.m. CT and totality at 1:51 p.m.
  • Cleveland: Partial eclipse begins at 1:59 p.m. ET and totality at 3:13 p.m.
  • Buffalo, New York: Partial eclipse begins at 2:04 p.m. ET and totality at 3:18 p.m.
  • Lancaster, New Hampshire: Partial eclipse begins at 2:16 p.m. ET and totality at 3:27 p.m.

Additionally, NASA will be providing live streams of the event, ensuring that everyone can partake in this cosmic celebration.

Whether you’re within the path of totality or observing the partial eclipse, this celestial phenomenon promises to be an unforgettable experience. Take the necessary precautions, find your ideal viewing spot, and get ready to witness the majesty of the heavens as the Moon and Sun perform their intricate dance. After all, the next total solar eclipse visible from the continental United States won’t occur until 2045, making this a truly once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

Leave a Reply