Eclipse excitement

On Monday August 21st 2017, there will be a total eclipse of the sun in North America.  The moon will completely cover the sun, and the sun's corona (atmosphere) will be visible.  NASA has created a website detailing the best spots to view this amazing event, the first of it's kind since 1979.  

What causes an eclipse?  NASA says:

Eclipses occur due to the special coincidence of the moon and the Sun being the same angular size. The Sun is 400 times wider than the moon, but it is also 400 times farther away, so they coincidentally appear to be the same size in our sky.
I'm quite envious of US residents.  I've never witnessed a solar eclipse first hand.  In March 2015, while we were living in the UK, there was an eclipse.  I was at work and didn't get out to see it.  Hubby worked as a teacher at the time and the school girls all went out onto the field with their pinhole viewers.

The GE girls website has a 'Total Solar Eclipse Viewing' project.  There are instructions for how to make a simple pinhole viewer.  Humans should never look directly at the sun, even in an eclipse.  The rods and cones in the human retina are very sensitive to light, and the sun's surface is so bright that even if you stare at it for a few seconds, there is enough light to damage retinal cells.  

It is safe to take photos, but please check the FAQs on the NASA website for advice on how to do this.  I would love to see your photos so please tag us on social media using #relaxandroam.

So if you're in North America on Monday, be sure not to miss the eclipse, the next one is 7 years away!


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