Acadiana prepares for partial solar eclipse: What you need to know

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LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) –  The solar eclipse frenzy has begun across much of the country. A solar eclipse is when the moon passes between the earth and the sun, blocking out portions of the sun.

Parts of the United States will see a total solar eclipse when the moon completely covers the sun. Acadiana, however, will only see a partial eclipse.

“73 percent of the sun or so will be covered by the moon, so it’s a very good partial eclipse for us,” says Dave Hostetter, curator at the Lafayette Science Museum.

Eclipses have been observed for many years in the past. As physics professor Dr. Natalia Sidorovskaia explains, eclipses have even shaped our modern scientific understanding of the universe.

“Two research expeditions were made to observe the full solar eclipse to confirm the theory of relativity that Einstein had just published,” says Dr. Sidorovskaia.

Solar eclipses are not particularly rare across the world, but one being visible in North America is.

“It’s been since 1979 since there’s been a total eclipse anywhere in the continental United States,” says Hostetter.

On Monday, August 21st, many across the country will get a glimpse of this rare astronomical phenomenon.

“The eclipse will run from 11:53 am to 3 pm, with mid-eclipse around 1:25 pm,” says Hostetter.

If you can’t watch this one, you’ll have to wait very patiently for the next one.

“There’s a total eclipse coming for almost all of Acadiana, but it’s not till 2078,” adds Hostetter.

To see the action first hand, you must be sure to wear the proper eye protection.

“It’s not sunglasses, it’s not your safety glasses, you have to buy a particular NASA certified glasses,” says Dr. Sidorovskaia.

If you need to place to watch, the Lafayette Science Museum downtown has you covered.

“We will have safe solar telescopes out for people that want to look at the eclipse for free and we will have a couple hundred of the eclipse glasses to give away at the eclipse,” says Hostetter.

Everyone enjoy and be safe while viewing!

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