Photostory: The Great American Eclipse

By: Nathaniel Baines

Pictures were taken outside of Scottsville, KY

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Our Sun as it is normally seen.
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The very beginning of the eclipse, also known as “ the first contact”. 
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The first contact progressed a little further.
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Progression of the eclipse.
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Further progression.
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The Sun in a crescent shape as the Moon almost completely blocks the Sun.
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Sherry Baines takes a selfie with her daughter Ava Baines, under the dimming light of the eclipse. Jeff Baines, in the back, laughs at them while checking the time to totality.
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Only a sliver of the Sun remains visible during the final moments of the first contact.
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A family, from left, Jeff Baines, age 41, Sherry Baines, age 39 and Ava Baines, age 8, watches the final moments of the first phase as anticipation and excitement buzz inside them.
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A barely visible portion of the Sun remains as the eclipse nears the second contact.
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The second contact occurs. The “diamond” of the diamond ring effect can be seen on the upper left side of the Moon.
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Totality occurs, the third stage of the eclipse.


Solar eclipses happen when the Sun, Earth, and Moon, are all in alignment. Total solar eclipses occur when they are in direct alignment, or a straight line. Many people believe that total solar eclipses are rare, however, this indescribably beautiful event takes place approximately every 18 months. So there are about two totalities, somewhere on Earth, in a three year period. The cause of this misconception comes from the fact that you will not always be able to see the total solar eclipse, or even the partial eclipse.

There are four kinds of solar eclipses-partial eclipse, annular eclipse, total eclipse, and hybrid eclipse.

The partial solar eclipse is when the Moon only partially covers the Sun. Partial eclipses are always visible before the other three types.

The annular eclipse is when the Moon appears to be too small to “cover” the entire Sun, but it still passes directly in front, leaving a small golden ring of sunlight around the Moon.

The total solar eclipse is when the Moon appears to be just the right size to “cover” the Sun. The only part visible during a total solar eclipse is the Sun’s corona, the aura of plasma surrounding the Sun.
The last type is the hybrid eclipse. This type of eclipse is a combination of the total and annular eclipses.
Your position determines whether you will see an annular eclipse or a total eclipse. Earth’s curvature brings some sections of the eclipse path into the Moon’s umbra, the darkest part of its shadow that creates total solar eclipses, while other areas remain outside the umbra’s reach, causing an annular eclipse.

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The diamond ring forms again as the Moon begins to move away.
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The fourth phase, or third contact.
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Progression of the third contact.
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The Moon has almost completely uncovered the Sun.


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The eclipse is nearing the fourth contact.
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The eclipse has reached the fourth contact, the Sun is left completely uncovered.

All pictures in this post were taken by Nathaniel Baines. All credit and ownership go to him.