Stay safe when viewing the upcoming eclipse
On Oct. 14, 2023, an annular solar eclipse will cross North, Central, and South America. Weather permitting, the annular eclipse will be visible in Oregon, Nevada, Utah, New Mexico, and Texas, as well as some parts of California, Idaho, Colorado, and Arizona. All 49 continental U.S. states will experience at least a partial eclipse. More detailed map views, including the timetable of each phase of the eclipse at select locations, are available here.
An annular solar eclipse happens when the Moon passes between the Sun and Earth while it is at 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 star. This creates a “ring of fire” effect in the sky.
In the U.S., the annular solar eclipse begins in Oregon at 9:13 a.m. PDT and ends in Texas at 12:03 p.m. CDT.
During an annular eclipse, it is never safe to look directly at the Sun without specialized eye protection designed for solar viewing. Viewing any part of the bright Sun through a camera lens, binoculars, or a telescope without a special-purpose solar filter secured over the front of the optics will instantly cause severe eye injury.
View and download NASA’s Safe Eclipse Viewing Flyer.
Eclipse glasses are available from many locations online, including Amazon.
When watching an annular solar eclipse directly with your eyes, you must look through safe solar viewing glasses (“eclipse glasses”) or a safe handheld solar viewer at all times. Eclipse glasses are NOT regular sunglasses; regular sunglasses, no matter how dark, are not safe for viewing the Sun. Safe solar viewers are thousands of times darker and must comply with the ISO 12312-2 international standard.
Always inspect your eclipse glasses or handheld viewer before use; if torn, scratched, or otherwise damaged, discard the device. Always supervise children using solar viewers.
Do NOT look at the Sun through a camera lens, telescope, binoculars, or any other optical device while wearing eclipse glasses or using a handheld solar viewer — the concentrated solar rays will burn through the filter and cause serious eye injury.
If you don’t have eclipse glasses or a handheld solar viewer, you can use an indirect viewing method, which does not involve looking directly at the Sun. One way is to use a pinhole projector, which has a small opening (for example, a hole punched in an index card) and projects an image of the Sun onto a nearby surface. With the Sun at your back, you can then safely view the projected image. Do NOT look at the Sun through the pinhole!
Do NOT use eclipse glasses or handheld viewers with cameras, binoculars, or telescopes. Those require different types of solar filters. When viewing a partial or annular eclipse through cameras, binoculars, or telescopes equipped with proper solar filters, you do not need to wear eclipse glasses. (The solar filters do the same job as the eclipse glasses to protect your eyes.)
Seek expert advice from an astronomer before using a solar filter with a camera, telescope, binoculars, or any other optical device. Note that solar filters must be attached to the front of any telescope, binoculars, camera lens, or other optics.
Even during an annular eclipse, or during the partial phases before and after annularity, the Sun will be very bright. If you are watching an entire eclipse, you may be in direct sunlight for hours. Remember to wear sunscreen, a hat, and protective clothing to prevent skin damage.
The next solar eclipse visible in the U.S. will be a total solar eclipse on April 8, 2024.