A Q&A for total solar eclipse

Wednesday, 02 Aug, 2017

This will be the first total solar eclipse - when the moon completely blocks the sun's light - over the United States since 1979, and the first coast-to-coast eclipse since June 1918, when the outcome of World War I was still in doubt. On August 21, all the countries from OR to SC will be overshadowed by a spectacular total eclipse. You'll be able to see if from everywhere-assuming there isn't cloud cover-but to see the full eclipse you need to be in a narrow band that runs from OR to SC.

Just because we're only getting a partial eclipse here in NYC, you'll still need to be prepared with the right equipment like eclipse viewing glasses or handheld solar viewers, or risk permanently damaging your eyesight.

Columbia, S.C., is billing itself as "the total solar eclipse capital of the east coast".

The eclipse will occur on 21 August and will pass through Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina and SC.

Scientists can then use that data to see how our solar-powered planet is affected by the total solar eclipse. Predictions call for the darkest part of the eclipse to take place during the normal times of dismissal for the district's most vulnerable students, those in elementary schools. On Aug. 21, we will experience a total solar eclipse. Roads will be clogged and travel times will be much more than a usual weekend.

Its path completely crosses the continental United States - from OR in the west to SC in the east.

Eclipse glasses are different than typical sunglasses, which don't filter out enough of the UV rays to make looking at the sun safe.

Never look directly at the sun.

Cortez will be able to see roughly 80 percent of the eclipse. However, you can watch the sun directly, without filters only during totality, when the sun is completely hidden from view behind the moon. In the Los Angeles area, the eclipse will begin at 9:05 a.m. and end at 11:43 a.m.

Midlands tourism officials are finalizing plans to give away 100,000 pairs of the glasses with lenses that allow viewing the eclipse safely. They will partner with the College of Natural Sciences Learning Community's Science Outreach Scholars, led by Allie Keller, coordinator of the Learning Community.

The "Great American Eclipse" will be an epic event, but it will not last long.

To truly appreciate the event, understanding the basics of a solar eclipse will come in handy - consider this your Solar Eclipse 101.