Total solar eclipse will be seen in the United States on August 21, 2017 – – a caution to UFO fanatics

by astronomer Tim Printy at:


“On August 21, 2017, the United States will experience a total solar eclipse that will be seen by millions of people. This is a very rare event and, assuming the sky is clear, people who are going to be in the path of totality are going to experience something really special. Photographs and videos will be shared throughout social media and many will record things that uninformed sky-watchers might consider to be UFOs. This will be a primer to help identify those objects.


During totality, the sky will become dark enough to see bright stars. My only total eclipse was from Baja in 1991. I remember seeing Orion’s belt during totality and the sky was like a deep twilight. Most important will be all the planets and bright stars that will be visible during totality. Next to the eclipsed sun, Venus and Jupiter will be the brightest objects in the sky. Being brighter than all the stars, people might consider them to be UFOs. Additionally, near the sun will be Mars, Mercury and Regulus. They will not be so bright but viewers might link their close proximity to the sun as meaning something significant.


The sun’s corona can produce wonderful streamers and bright areas that might be interpreted as something abnormal or unusual. While it seems unlikely they will be referred to as UFOs, some might interpret them as something that is not part of the eclipse.

In addition to the outer corona, the limb of the sun will present unique objects that can be misinterpreted by overeager UFO fanatics trying to find something in the videos and photographs. Two significant objects will be solar prominences and Bailey’s beads.

It is unlikely that a bright comet will be visible since none are predicted to be near the sun as of this writing. However, a new comet might be discovered a few days, or weeks, prior to August 21 that could put on a show during the eclipse. A good example of this happening, was the eclipse comet of 1948.


One wonders how many high altitude aircraft might be airborne and produce contrails or objects that look funny under the conditions of an eclipse. A plane might be illuminated by the sun if it is outside the shadow but a person, in totality’s shadow, would see a bright object moving across a twilight sky.


I have no idea if any balloons will be in use during the eclipse but it is possible that various amateur groups, or schools, might be launching weather balloons with payloads that could populate the skies prior to, and during, the eclipse. I have seen a lot of practice runs for the eclipse being mentioned by various groups. Do not be surprised if a balloon wanders into the path of totality.

In addition to physical objects, one has to also wonder how many UFO photographs will be submitted showing lens flares and other optical artifacts that will be presented as “smoking gun” evidence of UFOs.


The solar eclipse of 2017 is going to be a great celestial event for many Americans.

It would be a shame to see a showman, like Jaime Maussan, misrepresent the imagery as evidence that some alien spaceships decided to reveal themselves when everyone was looking up into the sky.

If you are near, are on the path of totality, you need to make an effort to reach the path. I have only seen one total solar eclipse in my life and it was spectacular. It truly is a “once in a lifetime” event and hope that my readers will enjoy the show.”


Here are some cities from where you can see the eclipse and the maximum percentage of eclipse and time:

Tucson, Arizona 67% at 10:36 a.m.

Los Angeles, California 69% at 10:21 a.m.

Phoenix, Arizona 70% at 10:33 a.m.

Houston, Texas 73% at 1:16 p.m.

Flagstaff, Arizona 76% at 10:34 a.m.

Albuquerque, New Mexico 78% at 11:45 a.m

San Francisco, California 80% at 10:15 a.m.

Santa Fe, New Mexico 81% at 11:46 a.m.

Farmington, New Mexico 82% at 11:41 a.m.

Durango, Colorado 84% at 11:41 a.m.

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 87% at 1:05 p.m.

Orlando, Florida 88% at 2:51 p.m.

Little Rock, Arkansas 90% at 1:18 p.m.

Colorado Springs, Colorado 91% at 11:47 a.m.

Denver, Colorado 93% at 11:47 a.m

Salt Lake City, Utah 93% at 11:33 a.m.

Indianapolis, Indiana 93% at 2:24 p.m.

Raleigh, North Carolina 94% at 2:44 p.m.

Rapid City, South Dakota 96% at 11:49 a.m.

Louiville, Kentucky 96% at 2:27 p.m.

Atlanta, Georgia 97% at 2:36 p.m.

Omaha, Nebraska 98% at 1:04 p.m.

Cumming, Georgia 99% at 2:36 p.m.

Portland, Oregon 99% at 10:19 a.m.

Boise, Idaho 99% at 11:27 a.m.

Idaho Falls, Idaho 100% at 11:33 a.m.

Casper, Wyoming 100% at 11:43 a.m.

Salem, Oregon 100% at 10:18 a.m.

Lincoln City, Oregon 100% at 10:17 a.m.

Lincoln, Nebraska 100% at 1:03 p.m.

St. Louis, Missouri 100% at 1:18 p.m.

Kansas City, Missouri 100% at 1:08 p.m.

Kansas City, Kansas 100% at 1:08 p.m.

Nashville, Tennessee 100% at 1:28 p.m.

Columbia, South Carolina 100% at 2:43 p.m.



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One thought on “Total solar eclipse will be seen in the United States on August 21, 2017 – – a caution to UFO fanatics

  1. BEWARE THE FLIMFLAM MAN loony tuned character called Jaime Maussan. Ya this guy looks extremely tipsy and shady. He should be run off by UFO community for pulling that alien mummy flim flam bamboozle stunt with no remorse .

    I saw the partial eclipse of 1962 or 63 and the shadows from the trees turned weird


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