Ring of Fire

Posted by Rufus La Lone on

Sunday October 1
As mentioned in our weather reports, here’s a brief run down of the upcoming Annular Solar Eclipse which will transverse portions of Oregon Saturday morning, October 14.  There are lots of published internet stories and write-ups concerning this astronomical event; local media will also be providing details of this event, as the time draws near.  We’ll list a few key bullet points below.
The Annular Solar Eclipse will be different from the amazing Total Solar Eclipse experienced back in Oregon back August 2017.  According to University of Oregon astronomy professor Scott Fisher, “The moon is going to be a little farther away from the Earth, and that makes it a little smaller in the sky. So when the moon goes in front of the sun, this time, a ring of the sun is going to be visible around the moon.”  The moon’s shadow will make a “ring of fire”, hence the event is termed an Annular, rather than Total, Eclipse.
Special Eclipse glasses must be worn during the entire event (unlike the Total Eclipse, when it was safe to view the full ‘totality’ without glasses).  This time, enough sunlight (9%) will be visible to damage eyes and unfiltered camera sensors, such as cell phone cameras.  Eclipse glasses should be compliant with the transmittance requirements of the ISO 12312-2 international safety standard - look for ISO logo on the glasses.
Area of Full Annularity - Eugene south to Roseburg is the approx area to experience 3-4 minutes viewing the Ring.  Look to the East, as the event will be in the morning.  Time frame of peak eclipse will be just after 9 am - so study maps & details as to specific times as the event nears.  As we recommended during the Total Eclipse in 2017, study the 8:30-9:30 position of the sun to get a rough idea of the angle of view at your location or planned viewing site, to be sure you have a direct view of the sun. 
The WxCafé™️ outlook for Saturday the 14th, as of Sunday Oct 1, looks partly cloudy, partly sunny with a good chance to see the eclipse.  Oregon may be in between storm systems, if the timing remains as the models project today.  At the peak, sunlight should be dimmed approx 91% - it will be noticed whether or not there is cloud cover.  We will update the Eclipse forecast in every blog post through Fri Oct 13.
 The last time an annular eclipse took place in Oregon was May 2012.  After the total solar eclipse on April 8, 2024 (Texas, the Midwest & Maine), the contiguous US won’t see another total solar eclipse until 2044, or an annular eclipse until 2046.  Rare astronomical events, indeed.
 Link to a decent article on this Oregon topic:  

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