TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — The annular solar eclipse will take place on Oct. 14, but Tampa is not within the path of totality, so we will only see a partial solar eclipse. Partial eclipses can still be fun to view, but you will need a specialty pair of eclipse glasses to keep your eyes safe.
An annular eclipse is a little different from a total solar eclipse, according to NASA. A total solar eclipse happens when “the moon passes between the Sun and Earth, completely blocking the face of the sun.
People located in the center of the moon’s shadow when it hits Earth will experience a total eclipse. The sky will darken, as if it were dawn or dusk. Weather permitting, people in the path of a total solar eclipse can see the sun’s corona, the outer atmosphere, which is otherwise usually obscured by the bright face of the sun. A total solar eclipse is the only type of solar eclipse where viewers can momentarily remove their eclipse glasses (which are not the same as regular sunglasses) for the brief period of time when the moon is completely blocking the sun. The next total solar eclipse in the U.S. will be on April 8, 2024.
NASA explains that a annular eclipse “happens when the Moon passes between the sun and Earth, but when it is at or near its farthest point from Earth. Because the moon is farther away from Earth, it appears smaller than the sun and does not completely cover the sun. As a result, the moon appears as a dark disk on top of a larger, bright disk, creating what looks like a ring around the moon.”
The path of the annular eclipse on Oct. 14 goes through Oregon, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas. As you can see on the map below, the Tampa area will see the sun about 60% eclipsed.
To the naked eye, you will not be able to detect the partial eclipse occurring, even at it’s peak close to 60%. If you have eclipse glasses you will see the moon moving in front of the sun.
The weather forecast will also play a big factor on what you are able to see. If it is a cloudy day and you cannot see the sun, you will not be able to see the eclipse either.
For Tampa on Oct. 14, the partial eclipse begins at 11:50 a.m. The maximum eclipse we will see from our area will be at 1:25 p.m. The partial eclipse for Tampa ends at 3:02 p.m. The duration of the partial eclipse is 3 hours and 12 minutes.
A total solar eclipse is set to cross America next year, on April 8, 2024. Tampa is not within the path of totality, so you will need to travel to experience the excitement of a total solar eclipse. You can read more about that eclipse in this article.