The place will you be for the 2023 and 2024 photo voltaic eclipses in the US?
Based on observations from several NASA missions, the map details the path of the Moons shadow as it crosses the contiguous U.S. during the annular solar eclipse on October 14, 2023, and total solar eclipse on April 8, 2024.
These dark paths across the continent show where observers will need to be to see the ring of fire when the Moon blocks all but the outer edge of the Sun during the annular eclipse, and the ghostly-white outer atmosphere of the Sun (the corona) when the Moon completely blocks the Suns disk during the total eclipse.
Outside those paths, the map also shows where and how much the Sun will be partially eclipsed by the Moon. On both dates, all 48 contiguous states in the U.S. will experience at least a partial solar eclipse (as will Mexico and most of Canada).
Reading the Map
On NASAs new eclipse map, the paths for the annular eclipse and total eclipse appear as dark bands across the U.S.
Anyone located in the annular eclipse path, from Oregon to Texas, will have a chance to see the annular eclipse if the skies are clear. Anyone located in the total eclipse path, from Texas to Maine, will have a chance to see the total eclipse, weather permitting.
Inside those dark paths are oval shapes with times inside them (yellow ovals for the annular eclipse, purple ovals for the total eclipse). Those ovals show the shape of the Moons shadow cast on Earths surface at the times shown. People in the areas inside the ovals will see the annular eclipse or total eclipse at that time.
For locations close to the center of the paths, the annular eclipse or total eclipse will last longer than those near the outer edges of the path. Inside each path are white lines that indicate how long annularity or totality will last. For the annular eclipse path, you can find labels (ranging from 3 to 4.5 minutes) near the Nevada-Utah border in the north and between San Antonio and Corpus Christi, Texas, in the south. For the total eclipse path, you can find labels near Presque Isle, Maine, in the north, and between the 2:20 and 2:25 p.m. CST ovals in Mexico in the south.
Viewers in locations outside the paths will not experience a total solar eclipse or annular eclipse, but they may still see a partial eclipse. Lines running parallel to each path indicate how much of the Sun will become covered by the Moon during the partial eclipse. For the annular eclipse, these lines appear faint yellow. For the total eclipse, theyre faint purple. Percentage labels for the annular eclipse lines appear along the left and top edges of the map. The percentage labels for the total eclipse appear along the bottom and right edges of the map. (Tip: The percentages appear at the same angles as the lines.)
Neither eclipse will be contained to the contiguous U.S., though. In the lower right corner of the NASA map, a globe shows the full paths for both eclipses. The annular eclipse (in yellow and black) extends into Mexico, Central America, and South America. The total eclipse (in purple and black) also crosses Mexico and northeastern Canada. Shaded bands (yellow for the annular eclipse and purple for the total eclipse) also show where a partial eclipse can be seen. For example, in October 2023, southeastern Alaska will experience a partial eclipse, while Hawaii will have a chance to see a partial eclipse in April 2024.
Making the Map
Michala Garrison, a member of the Scientific Visualization Studio (SVS) at NASAs Goddard Space Flight Center, applied her background in geography and cartography to design the map, incorporating information from a variety of NASA sources.
Earth elevation information came from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission, while maps of the Moons shape were supplied by Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. The positions of the Sun, Moon, and Earth were found using software and data from NASAs Navigation and Ancillary Information Facility. Garrisons SVS colleague, Ernie Wright, used all of this information to calculate the location and shape of the Moons shadow.
NASAs Blue Marble a global mosaic of satellite images assembled by the NASA Earth Observatory team provided color for the land. And one particularly unique feature Garrison thought to add along the path of the 2024 total eclipse was nighttime imagery of Earth from NASAs Black Marble which shows city lights on the night side of the planet as imaged by the Suomi NPP spacecraft.
One of Garrisons goals for the map was to inspire people to get to the paths of the annular and total eclipses, which she didnt do the last time the Moons shadow crossed the continental U.S.
Two photo voltaic eclipses will cross the US in 2023 and 2024. On October 14, 2023, an annular photo voltaic eclipse will create a hoop of fireplace within the sky from Oregon to Texas. On April 8, 2024, a complete photo voltaic eclipse darkens skies from Texas to Maine. On each dates, the 48 contiguous states of the US will expertise a partial photo voltaic eclipse. A map developed utilizing knowledge from varied NASA sources exhibits the 2 eclipse paths as darkish bands. Outdoors of those trajectories, the yellow and purple traces point out how a lot of the Solar shall be blocked by the Moon throughout partial eclipses. This video zooms in on totally different components of the map, explaining these and different options that describe what observers throughout the nation can count on to see throughout every eclipse.
In 2017, I used to be in Maryland, so I might nonetheless see a bit, as a result of I used to be in a partial eclipse, she mentioned. However I did not actually know all that on the time. It makes me need to go to, say, Albuquerque in 2023. After which 2024 to go additional south.
Garrison labored on many revisions to attempt to make the map each aesthetically pleasing and sensible, to assist folks inside and outdoors the paths plan their eclipse expertise.
It took numerous trial and error. I needed it to be useful to the reader however not overwhelming and nonetheless a pleasant trying product to seize folks’s consideration.