About the Eclipse

Why it’s a big deal

SIU and Carbondale are near the point of longest duration not only for the April 8, 2024, but also was for the August 21, 2017 eclipse, making Southern Illinois the “Eclipse Crossroads of America” and providing a unique opportunity to observe and study both eclipses from the same location. The two eclipse paths intersect just south of the SIU campus around Cedar Lake.

Viewing sites on campus

The entire campus is open for eclipse viewing on Monday, April 8, 2024. We will welcome guests for a guided experience at Saluki Stadium; amateur photographers and astronomers will be able to set up their equipment in the practice field just south of the stadium; and scientists and researchers will watch from a designated “dark site” observation spot near University Farms west of campus.

Carbondale eclipse timeline

Visibility starts at 12:43 p.m., with totality being reached at 1:59 p.m. Central time. Carbondale is on the center-line of the path of totality and will see 4 minutes and 9 seconds of totality for eclipse 2024, nearly double what was seen in 2017. The sun will begin to reappear from behind the moon 2:03:24 p.m. It will take about 90 minutes for the moon to clear the sun.

The total solar eclipse is defined by contact times, C1 thu C4. Times listed are for Saluki Stadium local time.

  • Start of the partial phase, (C1): 12:43:00 p.m. At this time, the moon starts to cover the sun. This continues for about 90 minutes. At this time you can only look at the sun using special solar filters or solar safety glasses (Eclipse glasses)
  • Start of the total eclipse, (C2): 1:59:16 p.m.   The moon totally covers the sun, blocking all direct sunlight. The sky darkens quickly and the solar corona (the atmosphere of the sun) is visible. You can observe totality directly, no special filters required.   Planets and stars will also be visible.
  • End of the total eclipse (C3): 2:03:24 p.m. .  At this time, the sun will start to reappear and go through a second partial phase as the moon slowly moves out from in front of the sun. This phase lasts for approximately 90 minutes. Protective solar filters and solar safety glasses are required at this time to look at the sun.
  • End of the partial eclipse (C4): 3:18:10 p.m.  Show’s over.  The sun is back.