Future eclipses

5 facts about eclipse-chasing in future

You can chase Totality in some unexpected places in the decades to come

1 – A Total Solar Eclipse is not a once-in-a-lifetime event
Technically a Total Solar Eclipse is a once-in-four-lifetimes event because if you stand still on the Earth’s surface for 360 years you will, on average, experience one Totality. However, not only can you travel to see an eclipse on Earth every year or so, but some places get more than their fair share; Carbondale, Illinois will experience Totality on August 21, 2017 and also again on April 8, 2024.

2 – You can see Totality from a temple in 2027
By lucky chance, the maximum duration of Totality during the Total Solar Eclipse of August 2, 2027 is at Luxor, Egypt, and it’s a whopper at 6 minutes 22 seconds. It’s also at midday, where the chance of cloud is practically zero. A large Ancient Egyptian temple complex, Luxor Temple is on the east bank of the Nile River in a city once known as Thebes. The Path of Totality also crosses Tangier in Morocco, Gibraltar in southern Spain (though that’s famously cloudy) and both Jeddah and Mecca in Saudi Arabia.

3 – The next really long eclipse isn’t until June 13, 2132
A stunning 6 minutes, 55 seconds of Totality will be experienced by people in central America and the Caribbean. So if you want to visit one more eclipse during your lifetime, make it the 2027 event.

4 – You can experience Totality twice in 2057
Two Totalities in one year hasn’t happened since 1889. In just 40 years – a mere moment in cosmic time – you can ring in the New Year on January 5, 2057 with a Total Solar Eclipse cruise off South Africa, then celebrate another one on Boxing Day in Antartica (remember to pack a large winter coat!).

5 – The best eclipse in the history of ever will be in the year 2186
If you can wait for 169 years and can get to northern Guyana in South America, count on a stunning 7 minutes, 29 seconds of Totality on July 16, 2186. That’s the longest solar eclipse calculated between 4000BC and 6000AD by NASA.

Photo credit: Mohammed Moussa – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0