On August 21, 2017 a total eclipse of the sun will be visible from a narrow corridor crossing the United States. It will be the first total solar eclipse visible from the contiguous U.S. since 1979. The path of the moon’s umbral shadow starts in the northern Pacific and moves east through parts of Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, Georgia, and South Carolina. The moon’s penumbral shadow produces a partial eclipse that’s visible from a much larger region covering most of North America.
This video, above, from NASA depicts the eclipse path. According to NASA:
When depicting an eclipse path, data visualizers have usually chosen to represent the moon’s shadow as an oval … For the first time, we are able to see that the moon’s shadow is better represented as a polygon. This more complicated shape is based NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter’s view of the mountains and valleys that form the moon’s jagged edge. By combining moon’s terrain, heights of land forms on Earth, and the angle of the sun, [the video] is able to show the eclipse path with the greatest accuracy to date.
Where’s the best place to see the August 21, 2017 eclipse? Here are 10 great viewing spots to gaze upon nature’s grandest spectacle, weather permitting.
Bottom line: New NASA video depicts the path of the August 21, 2017 solar eclipse across the United States.
Eleanor Imster has helped write and edit EarthSky since 1995. She was an integral part of the award-winning EarthSky radio series almost since it began until it ended in 2013. Today, as Lead Editor at EarthSky.org, she helps present the science and nature stories and photos you enjoy. She also serves as one of the voices of EarthSky on social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter and G+. She and her husband live in Tennessee and have two grown sons.