Solar eclipses are a natural event of epic proportion, as you well know from the total solar eclipse that passed over the U.S. on August 21st, 2017. Well, it’s time to get ready for another round, because it’s already here. Brace yourselves, there’s going to be a partial solar eclipse today.
Time magazine reports that the eclipse will be visible in Antarctica at about 8 – 9 p.m. UTC, and the end will be visible in Uruguay, Argentina, southern Chile, western Paraguay, and southern Brazil. For those who can’t get the right equipment in time, just remember to avoid eye contact. Even if you’re tempted, it’s not worth the damaging effects on your vision.
Though a partial eclipse isn’t as intense as a total eclipse — and it won’t get as dark outside since the moon is only passing almost directly between the sun and the Earth — proper eyewear is still important. In short, yes, you’ll still need your eclipse glasses. In fact, we should always protect ourselves from the sun’s UVB rays. This harmful light has the potential to burn your corneas, which can lead to extreme pain and blurry vision.
Don’t make the same mistake Trump did last year and stare into the eclipse without glasses. And remember that you can’t just wear your standard shades either. Solar eclipse glasses are the only way you can safely look up the sky. According to the ~official~ Eclipse Glasses site, the high-tech accessories “block out 100% of ultra-violet rays, 99.999% of visible light that’s intense, and 100% of infrared lights.”
For those who didn’t mark the occasion on their calendar and can’t get a pair on such short notice, National Geographic laid out step-by-step DIY instructions on how to make some yourself. In six easy steps, you’ll have all the protection you need to check out the partial eclipse. If you fall into this category, you better get to building. Time is ticking and it’ll be here before you know it.
The next eclipse is scheduled to happen this summer, on July 13th, 2018. However, a programmer at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center told Time that we shouldn’t expect much from it. “Even there it’s going to be really thin, not really noticeable,” he said.