What Time Is The Solar Eclipse 2017 In Massachusetts
On August 21, 2017, millions of people across the United States will be treated to a remarkable celestial event—a total solar eclipse. This rare occurrence happens when the Moon passes directly between the Sun and the Earth, casting a shadow on the Earth’s surface and blocking out the Sun’s light. While the path of totality—the area where the Sun is completely blocked—is relatively narrow, those living in Massachusetts will still be able to witness a partial solar eclipse. In this article, we will explore what time the solar eclipse will occur in Massachusetts, along with five interesting facts about this phenomenon.
1. What Time Will The Solar Eclipse Occur In Massachusetts?
In Massachusetts, the partial solar eclipse will begin around 1:28 PM EDT on August 21, 2017. The maximum eclipse, where the Moon covers the largest portion of the Sun, will happen at approximately 2:46 PM EDT. Finally, the eclipse will end around 3:59 PM EDT. It is important to note that these times may vary slightly depending on your exact location within the state.
2. Five Interesting Facts About The Solar Eclipse
a. Rare Celestial Alignment: Total solar eclipses are relatively rare events, occurring only once every 18 months on average. Therefore, witnessing one is a momentous occasion.
b. Path of Totality: Massachusetts is not in the path of totality, which means the Sun will not be completely blocked by the Moon. However, residents will still be able to see a partial eclipse, where a portion of the Sun will be obscured.
c. Eye Safety: Looking directly at the Sun during a solar eclipse can cause serious eye damage. It is crucial to wear certified solar eclipse glasses or use special filters on telescopes or cameras to protect your eyes.
d. Animal Behavior: During a solar eclipse, animals may exhibit strange behavior, thinking that it is nighttime. Birds may stop singing, and nocturnal animals may become active.
e. Temperature Drop: As the Moon passes between the Sun and Earth, the temperature can drop by several degrees. This sudden cooling effect can be quite noticeable during a solar eclipse.
3. Can I Watch The Solar Eclipse With My Naked Eyes?
No, it is not safe to look directly at the Sun during a solar eclipse without proper eye protection. The intense light from the Sun can damage your eyes and even cause blindness. Use certified solar eclipse glasses or special filters on telescopes or cameras to view the eclipse safely.
4. Where Can I Obtain Solar Eclipse Glasses?
To ensure your eyes are protected, make sure to purchase certified solar eclipse glasses from reputable vendors. Many libraries, science centers, and astronomical societies provide these glasses for free or at a low cost. Be cautious of counterfeit glasses and ensure they have the appropriate ISO 12312-2 certification.
5. Can I Use Regular Sunglasses To Watch The Eclipse?
No, regular sunglasses are not sufficient to protect your eyes during a solar eclipse. They do not filter out the harmful ultraviolet and infrared rays emitted by the Sun. Only certified solar eclipse glasses or special filters designed for viewing the Sun should be used.
6. How Can I Safely Watch The Solar Eclipse?
The safest way to watch a solar eclipse is by using certified solar eclipse glasses or viewers. These glasses have a special solar filter that blocks out harmful rays. Another safe method is by constructing a pinhole projector, which allows you to indirectly view the eclipse without looking directly at the Sun.
7. Will The Solar Eclipse Affect My Electronics?
No, a solar eclipse will not have any direct impact on your electronic devices. However, during a total solar eclipse, the sudden decrease in sunlight may cause outdoor lights to turn on or streetlights to activate temporarily. This is due to the light sensor in these devices being triggered by the decreased amount of light.
8. Will The Solar Eclipse Affect The Tides?
While a solar eclipse has no direct impact on tides, it can cause a temporary change in the tidal patterns. The gravitational forces exerted by the alignment of the Sun, Moon, and Earth during an eclipse can lead to minor variations in the tides.
9. How Often Does A Solar Eclipse Occur In Massachusetts?
The frequency of solar eclipses varies depending on the location. In Massachusetts, partial solar eclipses occur more frequently, with an average of one every few years. However, total solar eclipses are much rarer, and Massachusetts has not experienced one since 1994.
10. Can I Take Pictures Of The Solar Eclipse?
Yes, you can capture stunning images of the solar eclipse. However, it is crucial to use proper solar filters on your camera or smartphone. Without these filters, the intense sunlight can damage your camera’s sensor.
11. Can I Drive During The Solar Eclipse?
Driving during a solar eclipse is generally safe. However, it is important to maintain proper road safety and be aware of potential distractions caused by the eclipse. Avoid looking directly at the Sun while driving and be prepared for increased traffic near popular viewing locations.
12. What Should I Do If I Miss The Solar Eclipse?
If you miss the solar eclipse, do not worry. The next solar eclipse visible from Massachusetts will occur on October 14, 2023. Additionally, you can always watch live streams or view photographs of the eclipse online.
13. Can I Still View The Eclipse If The Weather Is Cloudy?
Unfortunately, if the sky is heavily overcast or raining, it may obstruct your view of the eclipse. However, it is worth checking the weather forecast and remaining hopeful, as breaks in the clouds may occur, allowing for partial viewing.
14. How Can I Learn More About Solar Eclipses?
To learn more about solar eclipses, you can visit your local library, science centers, or astronomical societies. They often organize educational programs or have resources available to help you understand the science behind this fascinating phenomenon.
In conclusion, while Massachusetts will not experience a total solar eclipse, its residents will still have the opportunity to witness a partial eclipse on August 21, 2017. Remember to prioritize safety by using certified solar eclipse glasses or viewers to protect your eyes. Enjoy this extraordinary celestial event and make sure to capture the memories safely!