The next solar eclipse is pegged for Monday, Aug. 21 and will be visible across the United States. Only some states will be in the solar eclipse's *magical* path, but everyone will get partial satisfaction (yay, for sharing). With the solar eclipse approaching next week, it may have many people asking, when was the last solar eclipse? History certainly repeats itself, and the sky is not exempt from that saying. According to NASA, the total solar eclipse that occurred in 1979 was "the last time the contiguous U.S." experienced one.
It's safe to say a solar eclipse is an exciting occurrence, so you can understand the hype forming around the upcoming one. We are all suckers for wanting to be able to say we were simply there for anything that might creep its way into the future's history books. I blame the utilization and accessibility of social media for this "look what I did or saw" urgency, but I digress.
The ways of the sky are always a thought-provoking concept to try and grasp. There's so much more to consider than just the moon, the Earth, and the stars. We relentlessly eat it all up because the self-proclaimed, childhood astronaut in us all is jumping for joy at the thought of witnessing such a magical event from the ground.
In case you wanted an astronomy lesson, a solar eclipse is when the moon blocks the sun's glorious rays from hitting the Earth. A total solar eclipse is only visible from certain parts of Earth. The sun, the moon, and the Earth are aligned during a total solar eclipse which will make things very dark as we fall into the shadow this astrological conga line will create.
So, what do we need to know about the upcoming solar eclipse? Again, the next solar eclipse will take place on August 21. Its path will start from the west, hitting specific states as it makes its way to the east coast. There's an awesome tool available so that you can track when the solar eclipse will be visible in your city based on your zip code.
The best way to get the full experience of this sky event is to do your research with your location in mind. We'll all get a little taste of magic, but a little bit of planning couldn't hurt. You know you don't want miss out on anything worth tweeting about.