December 7, 2023

Taylor Daily Press

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The moon casts a shadow over North America

The moon casts a shadow over North America

On October 14, an annular solar eclipse was observed in parts of North America. This special spectacle can be seen not only from the surface, but also from space.

During a solar eclipse, the Moon is directly between the Sun and the Earth. This blocks sunlight, causing less light to reach the Earth’s surface. The moon’s shadow is clearly visible in this week’s satellite image. Much of North America pales in comparison to other continents.

The image was captured by a camera on board the Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR). This solar satellite was launched in February 2015 and mainly monitors the solar wind. The satellite floats at the first Lagrange point between Earth and the Sun, just like the SOHO solar observing satellite. This way, both satellites always have a clear view of the Sun.

The annular solar eclipse was broadcast live by NASA. You can watch the video below. In the case of an annular solar eclipse, the distance from the Earth to the Moon is greater than normal, causing the Moon’s disk to appear smaller than the Sun’s disk from the Earth’s surface. Therefore, the Moon is unable to completely cover the solar disk. Next year there will be a total solar eclipse in the United States and the solar atmosphere (corona) will be visible during its zenith. Would you like to experience a total solar eclipse for yourself? On August 12, 2026, a total solar eclipse will be visible in northern Spain.

In recent decades, space telescopes and satellites have captured beautiful images of nebulae, galaxies, stellar nurseries, and planets. Every weekend we remove one or more amazing space images from the archive. Enjoy all the pictures? See them on this page.