Waiting for the heavenly show: What North Americans will see during the solar eclipse

On April 8, one of the main astronomical events of 2024 will take place: a total solar eclipse. Residents of Mexico, the USA and Canada will be able to watch it. On the eve of the celestial show, the NASA-supported Astronomy Picture of the Day website posted the following photo.

Corona, which can be seen around the Sun at the time of a total eclipse phase. Source: Phil Hart

The picture was taken by astrophotographer Phil Hart on April 20, 2023, in the Australian city of Exmouth. On that day, a band of the total phase of the solar eclipse passed through it. When the Moon completely hid the Sun, the corona became visible. This is the name of the upper and hottest part of the solar atmosphere. Under normal conditions, it cannot be seen due to the strong illumination. However, when the Moon covers the Sun, everything changes radically.

It is worth saying that the solar corona is a very spectacular sight, since the human eye is able to see its subtle structures and brightness differences. However, such details are very difficult to photograph.

Phil Hart solved this problem by using multiple exposures and subsequent digital processing. The picture perfectly shows the entangled luminous fibers that arise from the interaction of changing magnetic fields with hot gas. Bright pink loops of prominences are visible directly above the limb of the Sun.

In less than a week, residents of North America will be able to see something like this firsthand. There is no doubt that we are waiting for a lot of spectacular pictures of the Sun and its corona.

Earlier, we told you that NASA plans to launch three rockets during the upcoming eclipse.

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