Earth  Sun  Planets and Moons  ID: 4712

2019 Path of Totality

During the July 2, 2019 total solar eclipse, the Moon's umbral shadow will scud across South America, through Chile and Argentina, in just 7 minutes before sliding off the Earth's surface as both the Sun and Moon set. The path of this shadow, the path of totality, is where observers will see the Moon completely cover the Sun for about two and a half minutes.

This animation shows the umbra and its path in a unique way. Elevations on the Earth's surface and the irregular lunar limb (the silhouette edge of the Moon's disk) are both fully accounted for, and they both have dramatic and surprising effects on the shape of the umbra and the location of the path. The umbra becomes a polygon with edges that are ruffled by the high elevations of the Andes. To read more about these effects, go here.

The animation provides an overhead view of the umbra and runs at a rate of 30× real time — every minute of the eclipse takes two seconds in the animation.

Earth radius6378.137 km
ElevationsSRTM 3 arcsec DEM
Moon radius1737.4 km
Sun radius696,000 km (959.645 arcsec at 1 AU)
EphemerisDE 421
Earth orientationSOFA library iauC2t06a()
Delta UTC69.184 seconds (TT – TAI + 37 leap seconds)
ΔT69.368 seconds


Visualization Credits

Ernie Wright (USRA): Lead Visualizer
Laurence Schuler (ADNET): Technical Support
Ian Jones (ADNET): Technical Support
Genna Duberstein (USRA): Producer
Ernie Wright (USRA): Programmer
Please give credit for this item to:
NASA's Scientific Visualization Studio

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

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Data Used:
LRO/SELENE/LOLA/TC/DIgital Elevation Model
LRO/LOLA/Digital Elevation Map
Terra and Aqua/MODIS/Blue Marble: Next Generation
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.

SVS >> Moon
SVS >> Solar Eclipse
SVS >> Sun
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Sun-earth Interactions
SVS >> Hyperwall
SVS >> Eclipse
SVS >> Heliophysics
SVS >> Sun-Earth-Moon Interactions
SVS >> Sun and Earth
NASA Science >> Earth
NASA Science >> Sun
NASA Science >> Planets and Moons

GCMD keywords can be found on the Internet with the following citation: Olsen, L.M., G. Major, K. Shein, J. Scialdone, S. Ritz, T. Stevens, M. Morahan, A. Aleman, R. Vogel, S. Leicester, H. Weir, M. Meaux, S. Grebas, C.Solomon, M. Holland, T. Northcutt, R. A. Restrepo, R. Bilodeau, 2013. NASA/Global Change Master Directory (GCMD) Earth Science Keywords. Version