Viewing the Solar Eclipse, Safely

Friday, 04 Aug, 2017

There's a total solar eclipse happening on August 21, 2017, and for the first time in almost a hundred years, the Moon's unabashed Sun-blocking power will be visible from much of the continental U.S.

Cardboard frames for solar-eclipse glasses are stacked in the American Paper Optics factory Wednesday, June 21, 2017, in Bartlett, Tenn.

Most importantly, the library will provide eclipse glasses for those who wish to literally view the eclipse.

But what if you are stuck in work that whole time, or something else is keeping you inside? You can see the full list here. Totality begins at 1:14 p.m.

Hotels along the path of totality have been booked solid for a year, and Stark said to expect heavy traffic to and from the totality path, which stretches from OR to SC.

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This upcoming solar eclipse is going to be one for the record books. It ignores two other factors that shorten the visibility time of total solar eclipses: the increase in the sun's size due to changes in its interior structure and the gradual change in the shape of the moon's orbit.

When the moon is directly between the sun and the earth, it blocks the sun's bright disk (or photosphere), casting a shadow on the earth. The relatively thin path of totality will sweep across portions of 14 USA states: Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, Montana, Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina and SC.

'This will allow us to maximize our chance to collect data and connect the shadow of the moon to Earth science'. It's expected that here, the sun will be eclipsed by approximately 80 percent. The town of Blairsville will experience 2 minutes of totality while Clayton is closer to the center of the path of the eclipse and enjoys 2 minutes and 35 seconds.

The eclipse itself will start at about 1:30 p.m. and reach its peak at about 2:20. Wherever you choose to go, former NASA astronaut and senior manager Steven Hawley advises booking any travel tickets and hotel reservations way in advance and to expect plenty of traffic on the road.

But experts are pushing safety when viewing the sun on August 21st. Sunglasses (Rx or not; polarized or not) and smoked glass do not contain these layers and as such are NEVER safe for direct viewing of the sun. This event is free and will be held rain or shine, but space is limited. "It's one of the most remarkable, most spectacular naked-eye phenomenon that you can see".