Where, how and for how long is it to be observed? Everything you need to know about the April 8 solar eclipse

This astronomical sight will be visible mainly from North America. But the most enthusiastic will be able to follow it on dedicated sites in France.

It’s a divine sight waiting for millions of people, The solar eclipse this Monday, April 8, is a unique and impressive event, a true work of shadow and light. While two to five solar eclipses occur per year, such total eclipses are rare: this is the fifteenth since the year 2000). They interfere when the Moon is perfectly aligned with the Earth and the Sun, blocking the light from the king star from reaching us. More concretely, the Sun will disappear before our eyes for a few minutes.

However, April 8th should be unique. The Paris Observatory describes it simply “Extraordinary”, especially because of its duration. But how can you watch this scene and take it into your eyes – without damaging them?

Where to observe it?

To see it with your own eyes you will have to travel to the other side of the world. solar eclipse will begin Mexico, will cross the United States and end in Canada. but it’s in a small town in mexico This spectacle should be most attractive: in Nazas, in the state of Durango, in the north-west of Mexico. This small town, populated by about 4,000 souls, is placed in the center of the “band of totality”, that is, all the places where the totality of the eclipse will be visible. It can also be seen in its entirety from the states of Sinaloa (Mazatlán) and Coahuila (Torreón, Matamoros, or even Monclova). It is expected to start at 10:55 am local time.

Several events are already planned across the United States. In Niagara Falls, the Canadian-American city where Niagara Falls is located, it is planned up to a million visitors,

In Europe, this phenomenon will be only partial, and above all, it will not be visible from mainland France. It can be seen on the French archipelago of Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon, off the coast of Canada, where the eclipse will be nearly total. In the French West Indies, the eclipse will be partially visible, as in Guadeloupe, with obscurity less than 0.5%. In Papeete, French Polynesia, sunrise will be partially obstructed, as it will be temporarily eclipsed by the Moon.

Otherwise, you will have to go to Iceland, Ireland, the south-west of Great Britain and the north-west of Spain and Portugal to enjoy it. And further north, in Svalbard. Only a few hours left to be the fastest!

How to watch it in France?

The total solar eclipse will begin at 5:42 pm Paris time and end at 10:52 pm. The Sun’s extinction will reach its maximum at 8:17 pm.

will be our most enthusiastic compatriots spoiled for choice To observe it – at least indirectly. NASA will offer live broadcast on its channel youtube and on their account Twitch, The broadcast will start at 7 pm (Paris time) and run until 10 pm path Of eclipse. Discussion and decryption is planned with experts. And if the weather is nice, NASA should also share photos of the show from different angles. A chat will also be set up.

Météomedia, a Quebec television channel dedicated to meteorology, will also broadcast television and a special program on its own channel. youtube, What about France? For the most sentimental, visit Cite de l’espace toulouse, French city of aeronautics. The eclipse will be broadcast live from an IMAX theater and commented by their special correspondent based in Dallas, Texas. Before the broadcast, a conference will be hosted by Nathalie Cabrol, a NASA researcher and world expert in the search for extraterrestrial life. He will be accompanied by astrophysicist Sylvestre Maurice of the Institute for Research in Astrophysics and Planetology (IRAP), who is an expert in Mars exploration. And for those who are late, too bad the event is already sold out.

how long is it ?

In total, this event will last for exactly 5 hours, 10 minutes and 5 seconds. But the highlight of the show, the total solar eclipse, will last 4 minutes and 34 seconds. Exceptionally long duration. ,We will have to go back to the total solar eclipse of March 9, 2016, which will have almost the same duration (4 minutes 9 seconds), then wait for the next solar eclipse which will occur on August 2, 2027 (6 minutes 23 seconds), Which will be visible from the south of Spain. and from all Maghreb countries”, explains itparis observatory, This period will decrease as we move away from the middle of the centrality band.

Thus some parts of the world will be completely immersed in darkness. The solar eclipse will cause a drastic reduction in light, leading to a drop in temperatures and winds. Animals sensitive to these variations may adopt some confusing behaviour. As AFP notes, giraffes were seen galloping. Cocks and crickets started crowing.

How to protect your eyes?

For weeks, local officials have been issuing similar safety instructions. Observers must wear special glasses to view the Sun. Otherwise, they risk serious eye damage, including severe burns to the back of the eye. The risks of damaging the retina are far from a myth. And already, many sites are reporting stock shortages of the glasses. For those who do not have the facility, experts recommend viewing the eclipse indirectly. As the Paris Observatory notes, “It is possible to follow the eclipse with an astronomical telescope. But to avoid any irreversible eye accidents it should be equipped with ‘Mylar’ type sun filter of density 5. Sunglasses should be avoided.

When was the last eclipse?

The last total eclipse occurred in France 25 years ago. More precisely, it was August 11, 1999. The incident was visible for a little less than 3 minutes.

When will the next eclipse occur?

The next solar eclipse will be visible in France on August 12, 2026. But to fully enjoy this view you will have to go to Spain. What about a total solar eclipse? Most of us will have to skip this: It will happen on September 3, 2081.

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