Partial Solar Eclipse to Occur in Southern Wisconsin Sunday, May 20th

A partial solar eclipse is one in which only the outer ring of the moon's shadow (the penumbral shadow) traverses the Earth, blocking a portion of the sun. Here in southern Wisconsin, the moon will block nearly 60% of the sun. The table below lists a few details about the eclipse for the Milwaukee and Madison area.

  Milwaukee Madison
Start Time 7:21 PM 7:21 PM
Duration ~53 minutes ~59 minutes
Sunset 8:14 PM 8:20 PM
Obscuration 57.1% 58.2%

If you are interested in learning what the eclipse will be like in other areas, you can obtain the same values as those listed the table above from the U.S. Naval Observatory's Solar Eclipse Computer.

While Wisconsin will only experience a partial solar eclipse, certain areas in the southwestern and western United States (highlighted on the map below) will experience an annular eclipse. An annular eclipse occurs when the moon moves directly between the Earth and the sun. Since the moon is slightly more distant from the Earth than on average, there will still be a ring of light, or a "ring of fire", around the silhouette of the moon. During a total eclipse, the "ring of fire" would not be visible.

Partial Solar Eclipse Annular Solar Eclipse Total Solar Eclipse


A partial solar eclipse will occur in Wisconsin this Sunday evening. The eclipse will begin at 7:21 PM and continue until sunset. Unfortunately, there is a possibility that a cold front with clouds and possible showers and thunderstorms will be moving across Wisconsin during this time period, and could obstruct our view of the eclipse.  As such, keep up with the latest forecasts regarding this period.


More information on the annular eclipse can be viewed here.

Feel free to share your pictures of the eclipse with us on our facebook page, or you can email them to


NWS Milwaukee/Sullivan

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