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Mar 26, 2017, 1:37 PM 1

 skywatchers will be treated to a rare and spectacular celestial show the first total solar eclipse visible from the continental United States in nearly four decades.

On August 21, 2017 a total eclipse of the sun will be visible from a narrow corridor crossing the United States.
 It will be the first total solar eclipse visible from the contiguous U.S. since 1979.
There will be several eclipses that pass over the US in the 21st century.
 This is only the first, but it has been a long time coming! If you miss this one,
 you will only need to wait seven years for another, it's true - but why wait?!
 And besides, the total eclipse in 2024 will also be visible from Mexico and Canada
(in fact, Mexico is in many ways a better place to watch that one from!).
 So come on out for this one, and enjoy what will truly be considered
 "The Great American Eclipse!"

When depicting an eclipse path, data visualizers have usually chosen to represent the moon’s shadow as an oval …
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,
 is able to show the eclipse path with the greatest accuracy to date.
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