June 16, 2024

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Rockets and planes will chase the eclipse to solve the sun's enduring mysteries

Rockets and planes will chase the eclipse to solve the sun's enduring mysteries

Editor's Note: A version of this story appeared in CNN's science newsletter Wonder Theory. To get it in your inbox, Sign up for free here.



CNN

Here comes the sun, as the Beatles famously sang.

Monday a Total solar eclipse It will grace the skies of Mexico, the United States and Canada as the moon obscures the face of the sun from view, temporarily turning from day into night.

Millions of people will be on their way to witness this celestial phenomenon. Since the eclipse creates a juxtaposition, or alignment, of three objects in space, it will unite spectators in moments of wonder.

Totality, when the sunlight dims briefly, plays on the emotions. You know it's coming, but the sudden change is still completely unexpected – something I personally hope to experience for the first time when I'm reporting from my spot inside the track.

So Grab your eclipse glassestaste Treats under the title Eclipse And cue a Star-themed playlist (“Total Eclipse of the Heart,” anyone?). It will soon be time to indulge in a little awe and cosmic whimsy.

Amir Kaspi/Courtesy of NASA

NASA's WB-57 aircraft will fly within the path of totality on Monday to collect data about the sun during the eclipse.

Planes will fly at high altitudes within Monday's eclipse's path Uncover some of the greatest unsolved mysteries About the sun.

Three acoustic rockets are scheduled to launch from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia before, during and after the eclipse to measure the Sun's effect on Earth's upper atmosphere, known as the ionosphere.

Meanwhile, NASA is outfitting its WB-57 planes with science instruments as they fly 50,000 feet (15,240 meters) above the Earth's surface to get a clear view of the Sun's outer atmosphere. Called the corona, it is millions of degrees hotter than the surface of the Sun, but scientists don't know why.

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The faint corona will be visible during the eclipse when sunlight is blocked, allowing researchers to get a detailed look at its mysterious glowing structures.

Are you packing for eclipse trips or trying to decide what to wear on Monday? There may be a remarkable optical phenomenon occurring during a celestial event It makes you lean more towards red and green.

More than two centuries ago, physiologist Jean Evangelista Porcini observed how contrasting red flowers appeared on sunny days compared to night. The Purkinje effect explains why some colors appear different depending on lighting.

For example, in low light, bright reds appear dark or almost black, while blues and greens become more vibrant. The rapid contrast of the eclipse makes this effect clearly visible.

Send us your stories and photos from the eclipse!

Do you see the eclipse from the path of the total eclipse? Have you traveled far and gathered with family and friends to watch the event? Or is your city located on a path that many consider a once-in-a-lifetime sight? Everyone has their own eclipse story, and we want to hear yours! Send photos* and some details about your eclipse experience to [email protected], and they may end up in CNN's ongoing Eclipse Across America coverage. Please share your full name and pronouns for credit information and captions.

Eric Adams/AP

A total solar eclipse can be seen through the clouds as seen from Vagar, one of the Faroe Islands, on March 20, 2015.

As the eclipse approaches, many people… They scramble to make or change their plans -And the weather plays a big role Throwing some unexpected curveballs.

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Planning ahead is key, but many people have made travel and flight reservations for areas within the overall route based on historical data about spring weather patterns.

Now, Mother Nature is doing something flip-flopping, and areas that normally see cloud cover and stormy weather are clear, and the opposite is true for other parts of the country.

but, Not all clouds will stick around on the big day. A new study reveals that shallow cumulonimbus clouds are largely dissipated even when a small portion of sunlight is blocked Why are they not valid until after the eclipse? Passed.

Eclipse mania may seem prevalent, but these are celestial events It can be a more spiritual and reflective experience For some, depending on religion or culture.

Hindus consider the eclipse a bad omen, while many Muslims view this phenomenon as a time for prayer and spiritual contemplation.

At the same time, some Christians interpreted the temporary darkening of the sky as a sign of the approaching “end days.”

The Navajo view the eclipse with reverence, seeing it as a time to show reverence and respect for the sun and earth.

NASA

The final Columbia shuttle crew included (from left) NASA astronauts David Brown, Rick Husband, Laurel Clark, Kalpana Chawla, Michael Anderson, William McCall and Ilan Ramon of the Israel Space Agency.

When Columbia launched on its maiden voyage in 1981, it launched NASA's Space Shuttle program It ushered in a new era of exploration.

But nearly 22 years later, the aging shuttle's 28th flight ended in disaster when it crashed over east Texas, killing all seven crew members.

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The tragedy marked the beginning of the end for the shuttle program. How did he do it? Such a revolutionary idea goes horribly wrong?

Discover new details explaining what ultimately led to the disaster in the four-part CNN original series, “Space Shuttle Columbia: Final Flight,” premiering at 9pm ET/PT on Sunday.

Follow these fun reads before turning your focus to the eclipse:

— Scientists have discovered many new species, including A Barbie pink wandering porpoiseduring a deep-sea expedition 16,400 feet (5,000 meters) below the surface of the Pacific Ocean.

— The endangered Indochinese tiger and the flat-headed cat are two wild cats that roam the tropical jungle of Malaysia. a A new series of photos contains a rare glimpse In many species it is elusive.

– that Asian elephant bathing in the sunlightPolar bears competing with blue-footed boobies are just a few of the images being offered at an auction of fine art photographs inspired by the legacy of primatologist Jane Goodall, who turned 90 on Wednesday.

Like what I read? Oh, but there's more. Register here To receive in your inbox the next issue of Wonder Theory, brought to you by CNN Space and Science writers Ashley Strickland And Katie Hunt. They find wonder at planets beyond our solar system and discoveries from the ancient world.

*Any materials sent are subject to the following terms. I agree that CNN can use my images/videos (“Materials”) on all CNN media, worldwide in perpetuity along with affiliate distribution. I also confirm that I am the exclusive owner and rights holder of the material, I did not create the material using artificial intelligence, and I have all rights necessary to permit use of this material at this URL.