Cloud may ruin view of partial eclipse from Sussex

Partial eclipse
Partial eclipse

Cloud could spoil any chance to see the partial eclipse from Sussex this evening (Monday August 21).

A partial solar eclipse will be visible across the UK just before sunset as the moon appears to take a ‘bite’ out of the sun.

The phenomenon will last roughly 40 minutes with the mid-point occurring at different times around the country.

In Sussex that should be around 8.05pm.

However, the weather forecast across the county is for cloud this evening, although there may be enough breaks to catch a glimpse.

The movement of the moon between the Earth and sun will produce a much more dramatic event in the US, where a total eclipse will turn day to night for two minutes.

Up to five solar eclipses occur each year, but each one is visible only within a limited band across the Earth’s surface where the moon’s shadow happens to fall.

In the US this year, 14 states will experience a total eclipse along a path stretching from the east to the west coast.

The Royal Astronomical Society warned anyone hoping to catch the phenomenon not to look directly at the sun.

A spokesman said: “Extreme care must be taken when observing the eclipse, because of the blinding brilliance of the sun. Never, ever look directly at the sun through binoculars or a telescope, for you will risk permanent eye damage.

“Even staring at the sun is dangerous, and sunglasses are no protection. Hospitals regularly see patients who have damaged their eyes while watching eclipses. Don’t be among them.”