A solar eclipse happens between two and five times a year. Why is the August 21, 2017 eclipse considered so extraordinary?
There are four types of solar eclipses: partial, annular, total, and the extremely rare hybrid of an annular/total. Most eclipses fall in the partial category. The ability to see an eclipse is limited to an extremely narrow path for any given event. To be in the path of a total eclipse is even more limited. The last time the path of a total eclipse crossed Kansas was in 1918. The next time a total eclipse will cross Kansas won’t be until August 12th, 2045.
The Kansas mesonet will be tracking meteorological parameters at 6 mesonet locations nearest to the path of totality. To watch how the temperature and incoming solar radiation change during the eclipse, check out the Kansas mesonet page: http://mesonet.k-state.edu/special/eclipse
After the event, the complete one-minute data set will be available online.
We also plan on archiving photographs of general sky conditions and the surrounding landscape during the event. We won’t be trying to photograph the actual eclipse, as that requires specialized equipment that we don’t have. To watch the eclipse online and to view images of the eclipse, check the NASA eclipse page: https://www.nasa.gov/eclipselive
Mary Knapp, Weather Data Library