Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Partial solar eclipse expected to be visible from Iowa on Thursday morning

(Radio Iowa) - If the skies are clear, a partial solar eclipse will be visible over Iowa on Thursday morning. The moon is at its farthest point from the earth so it's an "annular" eclipse as it won't completely cover the sun. Linda Burkhart, director of the Sanford Museum and Planetarium in Cherokee, says other parts of the country will have a better view but it'll still be interesting to see.

"What people in Iowa are seeing is called a partial eclipse, only a bite of the sun will disappear for us," Burkhart says. "If you live west of Des Moines, that bite gets smaller and smaller and smaller and where we are, sunrise will be at 5:40 and the partial eclipse that we are able to see ends at 5:45."

She says areas to the east-northeast of Des Moines will see bigger sections of the sun fall into shade. Burkhart reminds, don't look directly at the sun, but use eclipse-specific glasses or a pinhole viewer, so as not to risk eye damage. She notes there are other things to see in the sky this month.

"If you look over in the west-northwest corner of the sky, you can see Venus and Mars in the early evening, about an hour after sunset," Burkhart says. "Then, in the morning sky, if you look in the south-southwest corner of the sky, you'll see Jupiter and Saturn."

June 20th is the first day of summer and marks the summer solstice, a day where there will be equal parts of light and darkness. After the 20th, we'll start to lose a little bit of light each day.

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