The science behind the Great American Eclipe

Geronimo Vena
Agosto 12, 2017

The total solar eclipse on August 21, 2017, could be the most watched solar eclipse in history as it crosses the continental United States from coast to coast, according to NASA, and it will provide an unparalleled research opportunity, and a chance for amateurs and professionals to collaborate.

While the full eclipse of the sun will be happening to the north in OR, the partial eclipse on display in Stockton will see the moon blocking about 75 percent of the sun.

Blair said that staring into the sun can cause eye damage, and the eclipse should only be viewed through a telescope or binoculars that have a solar filter or through special eclipse glasses.

The USA TODAY Network will be covering the eclipse in full force on August 21, from OR through SC, so stick with us for the latest.

In Rhode Island, we'll only get to see a partial eclipse.

Total solar eclipses happen about every 18 months but cross the same precise spot on Earth an average of only once every 375 years.

The solar eclipse is just a few days away, and while the extraordinary event can bring shock and awe it can also leave you with a lifetime of regret.

There's no easier or cheaper way around this if you want to look up at the sun. But even a small piece of the sun is sending out risky ultraviolet light. As the Moon slips in front of the Sun, the landscape will be bathed in long shadows, creating eerie lighting across the landscape.

A spokesperson from Amazon says there's still a wide selection of glasses available.

Be sure you know the capabilities of your camera before Eclipse Day. The eclipse will be visible here from about noon to 3 p.m.

Astronomers from the U.S. Naval Observatory also got a lofty view: They tracked the eclipse from almost a mile in the air on the Navy dirigible dubbed Los Angeles, which lifted off from New Jersey and observed from Long Island. "You have to be in totality to see the precise moments of time the sunlight hits the edge of the moon where it's cratered or there's a valley". It's not safe to use regular sunglasses to look at the eclipse, according to NASA information. The experiment aims to map electrons within the sun's atmosphere, known as the corona, and could answer the question of why the sun's surface, which is several thousands degrees, is so much cooler than its atmosphere, which has been gauged in the millions of degrees.

So what will the sun look like your proper glasses? Upload your eclipse images to NASA's Eclipse Flickr Gallery and relive the eclipse through other peoples' images.

Science Central's gift shop is selling solar eclipse viewing cards for $1.99 each to the public and for $1 each for Science Central members. There are also tips on how to make an old-fashioned pinhole projector for viewing.

"The worry in the eclipse is that people are so interested to see one of the great astronomic spectacles that they will suppress their inner drive to look away from the very bright light", Van Gelder said. "For 20 years it's been one of my bucket list items; if something doesn't work, I have seven more years to the next one, right?"

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