Thirty-one outreach projects in 21 states are receiving mini-grants up to $5,000 from the American Astronomical Society (the AAS). The money will be used to prepare the public for the eclipse. This nationwide educational effort is funded by the National Science Foundation and administered by the AAS Solar Eclipse Task Force. I thought I'd tell you about some of the winners.
The University of California, Berkeley, and Google are looking for citizen scientists to document the eclipse in a “megamovie,” and help scientists learn about the Sun in the process. The project is seeking more than a thousand amateur astronomers and avid photographers to record the August 21 total solar eclipse.
I want to tell you about an exciting project that has the potential to produce something related to a total solar eclipse that no one has seen before. From even the best location, totality lasts only 2 minutes and 40 seconds. Unfortunately, this doesn’t allow detailed study of slow changes in the corona, the Sun’s thin outer atmosphere. To extend the time of study, the Citizen Continental-America Telescopic Eclipse (CATE) Experiment will use 60 identical telescopes positioned across the country to image the Sun’s corona.
Eclipse aficionado Alan Whitman of Toronto, Canada, has given veteran eclipse-chasers something to think about. He says after you have several eclipses under your belt you may decide to concentrate on a particular phenomenon that you have not yet seen. At the 2009 total eclipse in Wuhan, China his priority was to see detail on the Moon. Hmm. Has anyone done that?
A few days ago, I got an email from Robert Stinnett who runs the 2017solar.com website. He asked if we could help get the word out about the 200,000 solar eclipse viewing glasses freebies he’s giving away as part of a project to honor his late parents. Wow! What a worthy effort. You bet we'll help.
People in parts of South America and Africa will see an annular solar eclipse in their sky February 26. During such eclipses, the Moon passes directly in front of the Sun but doesn’t completely cover it, leaving a ring of sunlight visible at the peak. Because some of the Sun is visible at all times, you MUST view this eclipse through an approved solar filter.
If you turned on a television during October, you probably already know that the Chicago Cubs won the World Series, their first championship in 108 years. The 2016 season may have had a storybook ending for fans in the Windy City, but the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes baseball team has announced a 2017 promotion that will, quite literally, eclipse all others.
A week or so ago, I read something from John Irwin of the Solar Eclipse Mailing List (known as the SEML), one of Yahoo’s groups. He wrote that the eclipse's first point of contact with land was mentioned a while back. He then asked the follow-up question about where the last location will be. Here's what he calculated.