The distance between the Moon and Earth is not constant, nor is the Moon’s height above Earth. It ranges from a maximum of 406,720 km to a minimum of 356,375 km. A day of exposure allows the occupation of the sole of the sun: The color is 400 inches higher than the surface of the sole, but also in a day of 400 inches in the middle of the environment, which sort of means that the most important parts of our world are good for the whole world. in the sky. Because the Moon’s orbit is tilted about 5.9 degrees relative to Earth’s orbit, the lunar sphere may pass too far below or above the Sun-Earth alignment to be able to observe the eclipse on Earth.
While lunar eclipses are more frequent and observable on the continent, total solar eclipses can only be seen over a narrow band up to 270 km wide and a few thousand kilometers long. Outside this narrow range, the solar eclipse is partial as observed in Quebec on October 15. In Utah and Arizona, the eclipse was not total, but rather annular, because the moon did not completely hide the solar disk, due to the difference in the distance between the moon and the Earth.
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The annular solar eclipse, although not total, shows a great natural spectacle that the Americans called it Ring of fire. We were able to observe the scene in Utah’s Monument Valley desert surrounded by well-equipped amateur astronomers. You should know that it is necessary to wear filtering glasses intended for observing the eclipse, and optical devices must be equipped with special filters. These filters block approximately 99% of the sun’s intense rays, which is very dangerous for eyes without protection.
Our presence in Arizona was not without the presence of many important facilities, including the Kit Peak and Mount Graham observatories, and astrophysicists active in the search for exoplanets. Our visits and interviews bear witness to a rich activity in this field. The observatories of these American skies, almost free of light pollution, allow the discovery of exoplanets, are the subject of great astronomical news and the subject of our forthcoming chronicles. In fact, the ROBO-AO instrument of the 4.1-meter Mayar Telescope on Kitt Peak and the LMIRcam of the 8-meter Large Telescope on Mount Graham have discovered several exoplanets since 2012.
The total solar eclipse in southern Quebec on April 8, 2024 is an astronomical event not to be missed. Only the presence of clouds can reduce the fun, but it does not exempt us from being equipped with a pair of glasses or a certified monitor to observe the sun without danger. The filter will be on sale in stores specializing in astronomy, at the Planetarium in Montreal or at the Cosmodôme in Laval. This unique phenomenon will be at its peak near the end of schools on the afternoon of April 8.
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