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Monday, August 21, 2017

Eclipse of 2017- 8/21/17

 Excitement has been building across the U.S. for today's total solar eclipse.  Although here in central New York we're over 500 miles from anywhere where it reaches totalilty, I was surprised to see on this cool website that we will reach over 70% of it, which is a lot more than I had expected.  I'll probably try making a pinhole camera to see if I can make it work.  I'm looking forward to the next eclipse (in 2024) when we'll be much closer to totality.

Back in 1989 I spent the summer working at the High Altitude Observatory, which is part of the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, CO.  I don't remember all of the details of the project, but it involved studying images of previous eclipses stored on glass plates.  The images had been taken with special filters to allow better viewing of the solar corona, which varies quite a lot from eclipse to eclipse.  Since I'm a huge packrat I saved some prints, which I dug out the other night.  Here's one of my favorites, which was taken in India in 1980 (photo credit HAO and Rhodes College):

There will be prime viewing at the site of today's featured puzzle from Illinois, and no matter where you are located, you can take experience:

Tomorrow we'll be in California

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