Eclipse 2018 path of totality: Where will August solar eclipse be visible this week? | Science | News

The August partial solar will take place on the morning of Saturday, August 11.

The eclipse will only feature in the Northern Hemisphere this year, covering areas from Northern Europe to East Asia and Russia.

Globally, the eclipse will last about three hours and 30 minutes from start to finish, on the dayside of Earth.

The eclipse will kick off over the North Atlantic around 8.02am Universal Time (9.02am BST) before it reaches maximum eclipse at 9.46am UT (10.46am BST).

The whole event will conclude by 11.30am UT (12.30pm BST).

Where will the August eclipse be visible this weekend? Will there be a totality?

Unlike a total lunar eclipse of the Sun, like the one seen from the USA on August 21, 2017, the partial eclipse will not reach totality this time around.

Totality occurs during a solar eclipse when the Moon completely covers the glowing face of the Sun – the opposite happens during a lunar eclipse when the Earth covers the Sun as seen from the Moon.

During a partial eclipse, however, only a small part of the Sun vanishes behind the Earth’s natural satellite.

From the Earth, the eclipse will look like a black disc taking a bite out of the Sun without fully consuming it in darkness.

But the spectacle promises to be breathtaking as it is and the shadow cast by the Moon and the Sun will still pass over swathes of the planet.

The eclipse will begin over Greenland and the North Atlantic with the Moon’s shadow reaching Iceland and the northern tips of Scandinavia.

After this, as the Sun travels across the sky, the eclipse shadow will extend in a long semicircle over the North Pole and into Asia.

The shadow will brush over Northern Russia before settling on a path down the east of Asia through China, Mongolia and North and South Korea.

By around 11.30am UT (12.30pm BST) the Moon will separate itself from the Sun after Japan, China, Mongolia and the Korean Peninsula fall into the nightside of Earth.

According to NASA, getting to see a solar eclipse is a rare opportunity, but not because of how often it occurs but rather because of how limited it is.

The space agency explained: “The Moon’s shadow on the Earth isn’t very big, so only a small portion of places on Earth will see it.

“You have to be on the sunny side of the planet when it happens. You also have to be in the path of the Moon’s shadow.

“On average, the same spot on Earth only gets to see a solar eclipse for a few minutes about every 375 years.”

When is the next solar eclipse?

The next partial eclipse of the Sun will peak over Northeast Asia and the North Pacific less than six months from now, on January 6, 2019.

Soon after, the partial eclipse will be one-upped by a total lunar eclipse of the Sun.

The total eclipse will peak around 7.34pm UT (8.24pm BST) over the South Pacific and South America.

Stargazers in Chile and Argentina will be best positioned to see the eclipse reach totality next year.

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