There goes the sun — Aug. 21, 2017

Do you know where you will be when the sun disappears from the sky on the afternoon of Aug. 21, 2017?

If you don’t know, don’t worry: this is just a temporary event to be seen across the United States for just a few minutes from Lincoln Beach, Ore., to Charleston, S.C., as the path of the total eclipse of the sun follows an eastern route.

It will be the first total eclipse in the the United States in 37 years.  The thin path of the totality will pass through portions of 14 states.

The significance of the event will draw millions of people from around the world. Small cities such as Hopkinsville, Ky., will become big cities while serving as prime places to view (with protective glasses) the rare, awe-inspiring sight.

During a total eclipse, the moon will completely cover the sun and the sun’s tenuous atmosphere, according to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

The first point of contact will be at Lincoln Beach, Ore., at 9:05 a.m. PDT. Totality begins there at 10:16 a.m. PDT, the NASA website states.  Over the next hour and a half, it will cross through Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, Montana, Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, and North and South Carolina.  The total eclipse will end near Charleston, South Carolina at 2:48 p.m. EDT.  From there the lunar shadow leaves the United States at 4:09 EDT.  Its longest duration will be near Carbondale, Ill., where the sun will be completely covered for two minutes and 40 seconds.

During a recent presentation at the Mooresville Public Library, Link Observatory Space Science Institute Executive Director/CEO Greg McCauley discussed what the eclipse experience will be like. He presented several videos.