Earth  Sun  Planets and Moons  ID: 12412

Tracing the 2017 Solar Eclipse

When depicting an eclipse path, data visualizers have usually chosen to represent the moon's shadow as an oval. By bringing in a variety of NASA data sets, visualizer Ernie Wright has created a new and more accurate representation of the eclipse. For the first time, we are able to see that the moon's shadow is better represented as a polygon. This more complicated shape is based NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter's view of the mountains and valleys that form the moon's jagged edge. By combining moon's terrain, heights of land forms on Earth, and the angle of the sun, Wright is able to show the eclipse path with the greatest accuracy to date.

The 2017 Path of Totality Read more about this map

The 2017 Path of Totality: Oblique View Read more about this map


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Source Material



Genna Duberstein (USRA): Lead Producer
Ernie Wright (USRA): Lead Visualizer
Ernie Wright (USRA): Lead Narrator
Genna Duberstein (USRA): Lead Editor
Please give credit for this item to:
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center

The Blue Marble data is courtesy of Reto Stockli (NASA/GSFC).

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Data Used:
Terra and Aqua/MODIS/Blue Marble: Next Generation
LRO/LOLA/Digital Elevation Map
LRO/SELENE/LOLA/TC/DIgital Elevation Model
Note: While we identify the data sets used in these visualizations, we do not store any further details nor the data sets themselves on our site.

This item is part of this series:
Narrated Movies

SVS >> Path
SVS >> Totality
SVS >> Eclipse
NASA Science >> Earth
NASA Science >> Sun
NASA Science >> Planets and Moons