Excitement is building over a rare “ring” eclipse expected to be visible in the western United States and eastern Asia.

A partial eclipse of the sun will be visible from St. Louis on Sunday at 7:25 p.m., according to the St. Louis Astronomical Society, with the sun setting while in eclipse at 8:05 p.m. Some 53 percent of the sun’s disk will be covered by the moon.

However, rain and possible thunderstorms are in the forecast for Sunday evening in St. Louis, which would block the view of an eclipse.

The St. Louis Astronomical Society reminds you that viewing an eclipse through binoculars or a telescope is dangerous. The instruments concentrate a large amount of solar energy in a tiny area. Special solar filters, which attach to the front end of the telescope or binoculars, may be used.

Weather permitting, Astronomical Society members will watch the eclipse from the World’s Fair Pavilion in Forest Park.

The next solar eclipse visible from St. Louis will be a partial eclipse on October 23, 2014.

The full ring eclipse will first be seen in eastern Asia around dawn Monday, local time. Weather permitting, millions of early risers in southern China, northern Taiwan and southeast Japan will be able to catch the ring eclipse.

Then, the late-day sun (on Sunday in the U.S.) will transform into a glowing ring in southwest Oregon, Northern California, central Nevada, southern Utah, northern Arizona and New Mexico and finally the Texas Panhandle.

For 3½ hours, the eclipse follows an 8,500-mile path, with the ring-of-fire phenomenon lasting as long as 5 minutes, depending on location.

Outside this narrow band, other parts of the U.S. and portions of Canada and Mexico will be treated to a partial eclipse. The Eastern Seaboard will be shut out, but people can find online sites that plan to broadcast the event live.

In Los Angeles, the moon will begin to obscure the sun at 5:24 p.m. Sunday, reach its maximum coverage at 6:38 p.m., and exit the sun’s path at 7:42 p.m., just 10 minutes before sunset, observatory officials said.

NASA has set up an interactive Google map showing times of the eclipse — click on the map and it’ll show when the eclipse will begin and end at any given point in the world. The times are set to “Coordinated Universal Time,” which is five hours ahead of St. Louis.

Annular eclipses are different from total eclipses, where no “ring of fire” is visible.

Source : ‘Ring’ eclipse may be visible here at 7:25 tonight – STLtoday.com

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