Agosto 15, 2020

In Our View: Eclipse is a Big Deal

20 Agosto 2017, 09:43 | Azura Castelo

A spectroscope used at Columbia University in the 1860s. National Museum of American History Smithsonian Institution Flickr

A spectroscope used at Columbia University in the 1860s. 
      National Museum of American History Smithsonian Institution  Flickr

NASA has also released a video on how to safely watch the total solar eclipse. A solar eclipse happens when the moon passes between the sun and earth, but the moon doesn't orbit in the same plane as the earth's orbital plane.

The most recent annular eclipse to be witnessed in Richmond was September 18, 1838.

In a 70-mile wide path, Americans from OR to SC will have the chance to see the moon completely block the sun, momentarily darkening the world in the total solar eclipse, set to take place on August 21. This allows the moon to perfectly block the sun's disk, while also showing us the corona. The first point of contact will be at Lincoln Beach, Oregon at 9:05 a.m. PDT. Pacific Time and leave the United States at just after 4 p.m. Because motorists will be traveling to the path of totality from hundreds of miles, many motorists may not be familiar with the roads, terrain and climate. Here in Central Alabama, at the peak of the eclipse at about 1:35 p.m. Monday, the Moon will cover about 90 percent of the Sun's surface.

You can see a partial eclipse, where the moon covers only a part of the sun, anywhere in North America (see "Who can see it?").

"I remember the last partial eclipse we had here - in May 1982", Laborde said.

According to the fishing log I kept that year, the fishing that day started off decent enough. Or grab a kitchen colander - that casts images of the eclipsed sun onto a screen at least 3 feet away.

Eclipse glasses have been selling out fast, but there are still some places you can buy last minute equipment to safely view the Great Eclipse.

There are concerns about which glasses are safe, following recalls of some glasses, including by Amazon.

Regular sunglasses don't make the cut.

Staring directly into the sun can cause major retinal damage and experts have made it clear protective glasses are needed for this rare solar eclipse. The live stream will be available on the NASA page. There are a number of different goggles and glasses that people are providing that claim to give you the ability to watch an eclipse directly. These are much darker than the filters used for most kinds of welding. If you see any scratches or damage, do not use them. If you look through your eclipse glasses and find the sun to be uncomfortably bright, out of focus or surrounded by a bright haze, they're no good. As for binoculars, telescopes and cameras, high-quality solar filters are essential and must be mounted at the front end. Laborde said that might actually concentrate the damaging rays from the sun. During the partial solar eclipse, the tiny spaces between the leaves will act as pinhole projectors.

Just take two pieces of paper or cardboard, make a pinhole in one, then put the other paper on the ground.

Never look directly at the sun or use smoked glass, exposed film or mylar balloons. For more information and safe viewing tips, visit safety. Many small towns within the path of the eclipse expect their infrastructure and community services to be stretched to the limit during the event. Except during the very short period of totality, do not look directly at the sun without approved solar-viewing devices.

"If you are stuck under bad weather, watch one of the many eclipse webcasts available online and start planning ahead - either for the 2019 total eclipse in Chile or the 2024 total eclipse that crosses the U.S. from Texas to ME".

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