The longest land-based total solar eclipse in North America

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World’s Longest Land-Based Total Solar Eclipse Coming to North America

On April 8, 2024, North America is set to experience a significant astronomical event – the longest land-based total solar eclipse in over a decade. Crossing parts of Mexico, 15 U.S. states, and five Canadian provinces, this celestial phenomenon will be witnessed by approximately 40 million people. To witness this event, you can tune in to the live coverage right here on Space.com. Delve into our live updates blog for the latest information.

Ten Surprising Facts About the Total Solar Eclipse of 2024

  1. Duration of Totality: The central shadow of the moon will traverse the Earth for 3 hours and 16 minutes, offering 100 minutes of totality as it crosses North America. This total solar eclipse will be the longest on land since July 11, 2010, in Easter Island.
  2. Unique Nature: This total solar eclipse differs from the annular solar eclipse of October 2023. During total solar eclipses, the moon completely obscures the sun, allowing observers to see the sun’s corona with the naked eye. Remember, direct viewing of the sun is unsafe outside of the brief totality period.
  3. Path across U.S. States: Approximately 115 miles wide, the path of totality will span parts of 15 U.S. states, from Texas to Maine, offering a diverse viewing experience for residents and visitors alike.
  4. Tennessee and Michigan: Some regions in Tennessee and Michigan will experience only partial totality, providing a unique perspective on this astronomical event.
  5. Prime Viewing Location: A small village in Mexico, just north of Nazas, will witness the longest totality of 4 minutes and 28 seconds, making it an ideal spot for eclipse enthusiasts.
  6. Cyclical Nature: Solar eclipses occur in cycles known as Saros, occurring every 6,585.3 days. The upcoming eclipse is part of Saros 139, with the next occurrence slated for April 20, 2042.
  7. Seasonal Influence: Earth’s tilt plays a crucial role in shaping the paths of solar eclipses, with the annular and total eclipses of 2023 and 2024 showcasing the variation in movement.
  8. Urban Eclipse: Over 40 million individuals reside within the path of totality, with major cities like Mazatlan, San Antonio, and Montreal offering prime viewing locations for this celestial event.
  9. Alaskan Perspective: Alaska will observe only partial eclipses on April 8, with a total solar eclipse scheduled for March 30, 2033, providing a noteworthy viewing opportunity for Alaskans.
  10. Final Moments: The eclipse will culminate on the west coast of the U.K., where a partial solar eclipse will mark the conclusion of this remarkable spectacle.

This total solar eclipse of 2024 promises to captivate millions across North America, offering a rare glimpse into the wonders of our solar system. As you prepare to witness this celestial event, remember to take necessary precautions for safe viewing and immerse yourself in the awe-inspiring beauty of the cosmos.

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Chris Jones

Hey there! 👋 I'm Chris, 34 yo from Toronto (CA), I'm a journalist with a PhD in journalism and mass communication. For 5 years, I worked for some local publications as an envoy and reporter. Today, I work as 'content publisher' for InformOverload. 📰🌐 Passionate about global news, I cover a wide range of topics including technology, business, healthcare, sports, finance, and more. If you want to know more or interact with me, visit my social channels, or send me a message.
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