PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Western Oregon will be one of the best regions in the world to experience the partial solar eclipse occurring on Oct. 14, scientists say. NASA states that the moon will black out roughly 85% of the sun when the eclipse is viewed from the region, which includes the Portland area.
The Oregon Museum of Science and Industry said that viewing will be even better in Southwestern Oregon, where the new moon will block nearly 89% of the sun’s diameter. The annular eclipse, also known as the “ring of fire,” occurs when the moon passes between the sun and Earth at its farthest point from Earth in its orbit. During this time, the moon appears too small in the sky to completely block out the Earth’s view of the sun, causing a band of sunlight to shine around the moon’s edges.
“An annular, or ‘ring of fire,’ solar eclipse will travel directly over Oregon,” OMSI announced ahead of the October eclipse. “This will be the first major eclipse since Oregon’s total eclipse in 2017. On October 14, 2023, the new Moon will pass in front of the sun, bringing an annular eclipse to the border between Oregon and California and a partial eclipse to the rest of the Pacific Northwest.”
In Portland, the partial eclipse will begin at 8:06 a.m. and peak at 9:19 a.m. — when the moon will cover approximately 86% of the sun’s diameter. The eclipse will complete its path across the sun at 10:39 a.m. More localized viewing times and the latest cloud conditions will be available online through OMSI’s interactive map. NASA warns that stargazers should never look directly into the sun. Safety tips for viewing a solar eclipse are available on NASA’s website.
“During an annular eclipse, it is never safe to look directly at the sun without specialized eye protection designed for solar viewing,” NASA said.