If you are following the news about the upcoming “Great American Eclipse” of August 21, 2017 in the United States, there is one solar eclipse update that will help you preserve the 90 minutes of memories in a rare way: video.
While the big news is that scientists are gearing up to do a rare video that follows an entire solar eclipse, it is often advised that preserving the experience is best done in person.
According to a report from Telegram, those that have experienced a full solar eclipse describe it as a unique situation where unexpected things happen. For example, they quoted astronomer Matt Penn from the National Solar Observatory in Arizona, stating the following about seeing two solar eclipses.
“[T]he world goes still. The wind dies down. The temperature drops. Birds are silenced mid-song. You feel the shadow of the moon pass over you… and you really feel that something is wrong.”
Astronomer Matt Penn also shared the big news that there is an interesting and complicated project that has been set up for the Great American Eclipse on August 21 that will have over 60 different places in America staffed with scientists.
At each of these 60 stations, the scientists will be using video to capture the solar eclipse on camera.
Another interesting aspect of this Great American Eclipse video project is the fact it is fully staffed by volunteer scientists that call themselves the Citizen CATE (Continental-America Telescope Eclipse) Experiment.
Ultimately, the goal of Citizen CATE is to create a film stitched together that will result in being the “longest movie of a total solar eclipse ever made.”
The Great American Eclipse on August 21 is also a great opportunity for American scientists because it will be visible for almost an hour and a half instead of just a few minutes. Alex Young, a heliophysicist from NASA, explained why it is so difficult to get an eclipse “following” on video.
Part of the issue is the fact the shadow travels very fast. Despite this, if cameras and specialized telescopes are set up along the path, it can appear like the stitched-together video is “following” the solar eclipse.
If the Citizen CATE project is successful, they will have a series of 60 videos of about three minutes in length stitched together to create a continuous 90-minute video that follows the Great American Eclipse in its entirety.
In addition to having entertainment value for solar eclipse fans, the video will also provide data for scientists about the inner corona of the sun.
Although scientists are planning on filming the solar eclipse on August 21, there are health warnings for anyone looking at the sun with or without amateur and professional equipment during solar eclipses.
For example, two popular products include paper or plastic eclipse viewing glasses. Another product sold is an eclipse-friendly binocular set called the SUNoculars.
The Telegraph points out that there are many historic photographs of people looking at a solar eclipse through a pinhole in a piece of paper, but this technique should be avoided.
Other unique methods include using a colander or a reversed telescope. However, in all of the methods except wearing solar eclipse sunglasses, the idea is projecting the image of the sun onto a background.
As previously reported by the Inquisitr, Hopkinsville, Kentucky, is getting ready for a massive influx of solar eclipse tourists.
NBC reports that Hopkinsville is geographically where the solar eclipse will peak at visibility, and this has caused thousands of “eclipse chasers” to book every available room or field in that area of Western Kentucky.
For more information about following the Great American Eclipse on August 21, 2017, check out NASA’s Total Solar Eclipse of 2017 website, a section of the U.S. Naval Observatory dedicated to the August 21 solar eclipse, or the official Great American Eclipse website.
[Featured Image by Ulet Ifansasti/Getty Images]