HOUSTON - Tired of being left in the dark -- or in this case, the light? If you're hoping to be caught in the totality of the Moon's shadow, you won't have to go far next go-around. In fact, it'll come to you!
Mark your calendar: April 8th, 2024.
What I'm dubbing as the "Great Texas Eclipse," the totality, or 100% coverage of the Sun, will be seen generally along the I-35 corridor from Del Rio to Austin to Dallas and into the Ohio Valley. That means that the lights of the River Walk may sparkle in the dark at high noon and the green glow of the "Jolly Green Giant" skyscraper in Dallas will dazzle in the absence of light as the sun disappears over the big Texas sky.
The eclipse will begin precisely at 12:19 p.m., maximum coverage will occur at 1:40 p.m. and the eclipse will end at 3:01 p.m.
Unfortunately, Houston will be left out of the eclipses greatest brilliance and darkness again with about 94% of the Sun being obscured compared to the 67% it'll be during the August 2017 eclipse.
So now the question becomes: "will Houston ever fall into the totality of the Moon's shadow and if so, when?!"
The good news is, probably. Houston at some point will fall into the entirety of the shadow. The bad news is it won't happen in any of our lifetimes. In fact looking all the way to the year 2100, I only found four solar eclipses that put Houston deep into the Prenumbra (partial shadow) to a greater extent than what's expected August 21st, 2017.
Here's a look at the next four solar eclipses that will come close to putting Houston in totality:
April 8th, 2024 - The sun in Houston will be obscured 94%. (map seen above)
August 12th, 2045 - The sun in Houston will be obscured 83%
March 20th, 2052 - The sun in Houston will be obscured 92%
May 11th, 2078 - The sun in Houston will be obscured 97%
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