DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — 1806 was the last time Ohio witnessed a total solar eclipse, but that is changing in 2024.
Parker Lynch, Planetarium manager at Boonshoft Museum of Discovery, said, “It’s about 200 years or more, sometimes between total solar eclipses at any given location. So, we’re very fortunate to be around during this very cool time.”
The last time the United States witnessed a total solar eclipse was back in 2017. It has been over 200 years since the last total solar eclipse in the Buckeye State. On April 8th, 2024, from Earth’s perspective, the moon will orbit across and block the sun’s rays, casting a shadow on Earth below for a few minutes, but why has it been so long since Ohio has seen a total solar eclipse.
Lynch said, “We have a [total] solar eclipse on Earth about every 18 months. What’s rare is whether or not you’re going to be in what we call the path of totality, which means that the moon will be totally blocking out the sun’s light.”
Humans won’t be the only creatures taking notice when the solar eclipse passes by.
Lynch said, “So crickets might start chirping during the eclipse because to them they think it’s nighttime. Same thing. We might have bats that start to come out for a little bit during that total solar eclipse. We’ll also notice things such as the air will get cooler as temperatures drop and winds may increase due to that.”
The solar eclipse goes beyond a once in a lifetime sight. Scientists are eagerly awaiting the arrival, where they will be conducting studies on the sun and space.
Lynch said, “We found out tons of different things. Through those eclipses, it’s the only time that you can look at certain parts of the sun and get good data, and so, they’ve been invaluable to us being able to predict space weather and further those advances.”
The biggest factor in seeing the eclipse will be the cloud cover.