All You Need To Know About The Solar Eclipse!

The Basics


Image from NASA. Image Credit: Luc Viatour 

On Monday, August 21st 2017 all of North America will see a solar eclipse.

Parts of the United States will have the opportunity to see a total solar eclipse which is when the moon completely covers the sun and its atmosphere.

The Path of Totality

Image from NASA.

Totality begins in Lincoln City, Oregon at 10:16 am PDT and will conclude in Charleston, South Carolina at 2:48 pm EDT.

A partial solar eclipse, or some covering of the sun by the moon, will be visible throughout the United States.

 What We Can Expect

In Johnson City, we will see a partial solar eclipse. The start of the eclipse in Johnson City will begin at 1:07 pm. Maximum eclipse will be at 2:36 pm and the eclipse will end at 4:00 pm.

The time of maximum eclipse is when our area will see the most coverage of the sun by the moon.

Safety Precautions

Image from NASA.

It is not safe to look directly at the sun during the solar eclipse except during totality if you live in an area where you will see totality.

Our area will never see a total solar eclipse, so that means the whole time you need to have on solar eclipse glasses!

The only safe way to view the solar eclipse if your area is not in totality is by using solar eclipse glasses or a hand-held solar viewer. Sunglasses, handmade glasses or filters are not safe!

If you wear eye glasses normally, put your eclipse glasses over them but still wear your solar eclipse glasses!

It is unsafe to look at a partial solar eclipse without solar eclipse glasses. Your eyes could be greatly damaged!

But if you don't have solar eclipse glasses you can still view the eclipse safely! One way to do so is using the pin-hole method! Check out my blog on exactly how to do that on!

The Science

Eclipses occur when the moon and the sun are the same angular size. Although the sun is much wider than the moon, it is also farther away. Only during certain times do the sun and moon appear to be the same size to us. When this happens we get an eclipse!

Solar eclipses last about three hours from beginning to end at a particular location. The longest time for this eclipse (when the moon will totally block the sun at any given location on the path) will be about 2 minutes and 40 seconds.

One of the coolest parts about a total solar eclipse is that it allows the sun's corona and chromosphere, the two most outer parts of the sun's atmosphere to be visible. Typically we only see the photosphere of the sun or the yellow surface of the sun. Instead during an eclipse we see the corona which looks like a white halo and the chromosphere which will appear as a thin reddish colored ring around the edge of the sun.

Fun Facts

The next annular solar eclipse in the United States will be on October, 14th 2023. It will be seen from Northern California to Florida. There will then be another total solar eclipse on April 8, 2024 which will be seen from Texas to Maine.

The temperature difference will change about the same amount it changes from daytime to nighttime during the total solar eclipse.

Some animals behave differently during eclipses because they think it is nighttime!


Special thanks to NASA for this information!

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