2024 Total Solar Eclipse: Peak Spectacle to Last 4 Minutes and 27 Seconds

Solar Eclipse

Stay tuned for the celestial event of the year – Total Solar Eclipse 2024 – and learn how to watch it safely online

  • Total solar eclipse to occur on April 8, 2024, across North America.
  • Eclipse happens when Moon passes between Earth and Sun, blocking sunlight partially or entirely.
  • Totality, lasting about four minutes, expected to begin at 10:08 pm IST on April 8.
  • Safety precautions include wearing certified eclipse glasses to protect eyes during partial phases.
  • NASA, McDonald Observatory, and timeanddate.com to provide livestreams of the eclipse online.

Skywatchers across North America are eagerly anticipating a breathtaking astronomical event set to occur on April 8, as a total solar eclipse graces the skies, momentarily transforming day into night. Total solar eclipses, known for their dramatic spectacle, offer a rare opportunity for observers to witness the celestial dance between the Earth, Moon, and Sun.

Understanding a Solar Eclipse: During a solar eclipse, the Moon traverses between the Earth and the Sun, obscuring the Sun’s light either partially or entirely. This phenomenon results in the formation of a “path of totality,” where the Moon completely covers the Sun, plunging the area into darkness akin to twilight. Observers outside this path witness a partial eclipse, experiencing a slight dimming of the sky depending on the extent of the Sun’s coverage by the Moon.

Date, Timings, and Duration: Marked for April 8, 2024, the upcoming total solar eclipse will trace a 185-kilometre path across Mexico, the US, and Canada, offering viewers in 18 different US States a chance to witness totality. In India, however, the eclipse will not be visible. Commencing at 9:12 pm IST, the total eclipse will reach its peak at 10:08 pm IST, lasting until April 9, 2:22 am IST. While the entire event spans approximately two and a half hours, totality will endure for around four minutes, with some locations experiencing up to 4 minutes and 27 seconds of darkness.

Safety Precautions: Given the Sun’s intense brightness, observers are cautioned to utilize protective eyewear, such as certified eclipse glasses, to safeguard against retinal damage during the partial phases. Failure to adhere to safety guidelines can lead to severe eye injuries or permanent vision loss.

Watching the Eclipse Online: For those unable to witness the spectacle firsthand, NASA offers a live stream of the event, commencing at 5:00 pm GMT (10:30 pm IST) and continuing until 8:00 pm GMT (1:30 am IST) on April 8. The broadcast will feature expert discussions and telescope views from various locations along the eclipse path. Additionally, the McDonald Observatory in Texas and skywatching website timeanddate.com will host live streams on their respective platforms, providing virtual access to this celestial phenomenon.

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