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A Total Solar Eclipse is Coming to the United States!
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    2017 Eclipse Blog / FAQ



    ‘Eclipse’ Archives

    I have a department-store telescope with a “solar filter” – can I use that to look at the Sun?

    NO! NO! NO!

     

    sun_bad

    These cheap “filters” are manufactured and marketed as being able to be inserted into the eyepiece. That means that by the time they get to the filter, all the Sun’s rays have gone through … Read More »



    What time will the eclipse happen for me?

    This depends completely on where you are.

    If you are in the path of totality, then you first see the beginning of the partial phase. (This is called “C1” by astronomers) The Moon’s “bite” out of the Sun will grow slowly, until the moment you’ve been waiting for: totality!

    Read More »



    Seriously – why all the excitement over an eclipse?

    If I have to explain, you wouldn’t understand. If you already understand, nothing I can say will matter. It’s like having kids, or riding a Harley, or being in love. It just is – and you just have to believe.

    The author of this site has personally seen 12 … Read More »



    After the eclipse is over – then what?

    It is an almost universal reaction after seeing a total eclipse: You will be asking yourself within about a half a second when the next one is. And the answer to that is that there isn’t another one on land until 2019 (in southern Argentina and Chile ONLY). After … Read More »



    Can’t I just watch the eclipse on TV?

    You sure can – the same way you can watch a wonderful meal being eaten on TV, a live shot of a huge pile of hundred-dollar bills on TV, or a guy having a great date with a wonderful woman – on TV. It’s not the same as being … Read More »



    What if it’s cloudy on eclipse day?

    Eclipse chasers don’t like to use the C-word, but they do have to consider the possibility, of course. If it’s cloudy, you won’t see what you will see if it’s clear – simple as that.

    For those in the path:

    If the sky is completely overcast, it will get … Read More »



    Can I use a telescope to watch the eclipse?

    ONLY if you have a special solar filter that fits over the end of the scope (not at the eyepiece!), AND you know how to use it! Those are about $200 each, so you should know whether you have one or not!

    Ditto for binoculars – if you bring … Read More »



    How do I take pictures of the eclipse?

    Unless you have special solar filters for your camera and telescope, you can’t even set up for pictures like this – the heat of the sun will melt your lenses (not to mention your eyes)!

    If you want to pull out a point and shoot during totality, be advised that … Read More »



    How do I look at the Sun without going blind?

    This is a biggie. You CANNOT look at the Sun while ANY PART of its bright disk is still visible. The moon does cover quite a bit of it during the partial phases leading up to totality, but you HAVE to use special solar viewing glasses (also called “eclipse … Read More »



    Can’t I just drive to somewhere in the path, get out and watch it wherever I end up?

    Technically, you’ll be able to see totality from anywhere in the path.

    a_rev

    The closer you are to the center of the path, the longer totality will be for you. If … Read More »



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