Where will the solar eclipse be visible on April 8, 2024 and why is it interesting?


In April, North America will experience a solar eclipse. It makes it possible to study several cosmic processes that affect everyday life on Earth

A solar eclipse is a natural phenomenon in which the Moon can be seen from Earth, completely covering the Sun. We observe it because the Moon, located between the Earth and the Sun, casts a huge shadow on our planet.

Where will the solar eclipse be visible on April 8?

On April 8, 2024, a solar eclipse will occur over North America, visible to most residents of Canada, the United States, and Mexico. The full phase will begin at 16:38. 52 sec. universal time (21 hours 38 minutes 53 seconds Moscow time) in the central zone of the Pacific Ocean.

After this, there will be a 20-year break in the solar eclipse calendar, during which the astronomical phenomenon will not occur over the continent. For several reasons, the April 8 eclipse is exciting to researchers.

Long eclipse

In April, the Moon will be relatively close to Earth at a point in its orbit, making it appear especially large. As a result, the solar eclipse will last almost 4.5 minutes. That’s nearly two minutes longer than the 2017 U.S. eclipse, which will allow researchers to observe the phenomenon longer.

Moreover, in 2024 the Sun will be close to its period of greatest activity. This is the peak of an approximately 11-year cycle. As a result, many bright, petal-like jets of plasma will emerge from the solar corona (the outer part of the star’s atmosphere). The eclipse’s long viewing time and active Sun will make it an ideal object for study.

Almost 32 million people will be able to watch the total eclipse. This is approximately 2.5 times more than in 2017. The eclipse will be visible to some degree in every US state, as well as parts of northwestern Mexico and southeastern Canada.

Study of solar emissions

The path of the 2024 eclipse will be especially useful for researchers who study charged particles in the atmosphere. Unlike the previous two eclipses, the movement will take place within the visibility of three devices in the worldwide network of radars that monitor plasma emissions from the Sun. Accounting for these emissions is critical to ensuring satellites’ operation and GPS systems’ accuracy.

Virginia Tech astrophysicist Bharat Kunduri explains: “During an eclipse, as at night, all the radiation from the Sun escapes, and the atmosphere becomes slightly less dense and ionized. This can cause radio waves to behave differently. The event will provide an excellent opportunity to study the phenomena that occur during sudden changes in the upper atmosphere.”

Solar plasma collection

The eclipse will also be observed by satellites – the European Space Agency’s Solar Orbiter and NASA’s Parker Solar Probe. They will be able to take samples as solar plasma particles fly by.

Scientists want to know more about solar mass emissions, which can disrupt communications and power grids and potentially threaten satellites and astronauts orbiting Earth.

Studying weather and searching for asteroids

Similar to the 2017 eclipse, WB-57 F jets will take to the air in the United States. They will carry observation instruments, including improved cameras and spectrometers (devices for studying the spectra of electromagnetic radiation).

In addition to studying solar emissions, scientists will hypothetically be able to detect some asteroids within the orbit of Mercury. Without the Moon blocking the sun’s reflections, it is extremely difficult to analyze them. Other experiments repeating in 2017 include measuring pressure waves in the atmosphere emanating from the lunar shadow during an eclipse.


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