1 00:00:02,020 --> 00:00:09,040 [ music ] 2 00:00:09,060 --> 00:00:16,070 On March 20th, 2015, the shadow of the Moon will cross the surface of the Earth and create a total solar eclipse. 3 00:00:16,090 --> 00:00:20,100 By calculating the position of the Earth and the Sun on this date, 4 00:00:20,120 --> 00:00:23,130 we can produce several visualizations of the shadow. 5 00:00:23,150 --> 00:00:26,160 First we have the Moon's orbit leading up to the eclipse. 6 00:00:26,180 --> 00:00:30,170 Here the Earth, Moon, shadows, and orbit are all to scale. 7 00:00:30,190 --> 00:00:34,190 Now, what will the solar eclipse look like from space? 8 00:00:34,210 --> 00:00:42,210 From well beyond the Moon's far side, the shadow appears circular. 9 00:00:42,230 --> 00:00:50,230 Viewed from above the location on Earth where maximum eclipse will occur, the shadow would appear elongated. 10 00:00:50,250 --> 00:00:58,270 It hits the Earth near a point south of Greenland and departs very near the North Pole. 11 00:00:58,290 --> 00:01:03,310 The central black dot you see is the umbra, where the sun is completely covered by the Moon. 12 00:01:03,330 --> 00:01:08,360 The fainter, much larger shadow is the penumbra, where the Sun is only partially obscured. 13 00:01:08,380 --> 00:01:14,410 The Faroe Islands of Denmark and the Svalbard islands off Norway are in the path of the umbra, 14 00:01:14,430 --> 00:01:20,450 while the penumbra covers all of Europe, and extends to North Africa and Russia. 15 00:01:20,470 --> 00:01:26,480 Back in May 2012, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter turned its camera away from the Moon and toward Earth, 16 00:01:26,500 --> 00:01:31,500 capturing this stunning image of the Moon's shadow during the annular eclipse. 17 00:01:31,520 --> 00:01:39,500 So, no matter where we view them from, solar eclipses are a dramatic spectacle made possible by the shadow of the Moon. 18 00:01:39,520 --> 00:01:54,228