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Sunset Solar Eclipse Viewing in Boynton Beach on April 8, 2005

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  • Erich Landstrom
    WHAT: Partial eclipse of the Sun. Free telescope viewing and eclipse glasses for students (while supplies last). WHEN: Friday evening, April 8, 2005 5:15
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 21, 2005
      WHAT: Partial eclipse of the Sun. Free telescope
      viewing and eclipse glasses for students (while
      supplies last).

      WHEN: Friday evening, April 8, 2005 5:15 p.m. - 7:15
      p.m. (weather permitting)

      April 8, 2005
      E.D.T. Eclipse stage
      5:23 p.m. Partial eclipse begins
      6:21 p.m. Maximum Eclipse 43.7% of the solar
      disc occulted.
      7:14 a.m. Partial eclipse ends
      7:41 a.m. Sunset

      WHERE: The Boynton Beach City Library located at 208
      S. Seacrest Blvd., Boynton Beach FL 33435. Take I-95
      to Boynton Beach Blvd. Drive east to Seacrest and turn
      south. Library is 4 blocks on the left (east) side of
      Seacrest. The parking lot and main entrance are on the
      southeast corner of the building. Phone# 742-6390.

      WHY: A partial eclipse of the Sun will grace the
      skies of much of North America during the late
      afternoon and evening hours of Friday, April 8, 2005.
      The eclipse will be particularly dramatic in south
      Florida, where half of the Sun's disk will be blocked
      by the Moon. From the southern tip of Florida, about
      50 percent of the Sun's diameter will be covered,
      after 6 p.m. EDT.

      For viewers in the southern and mid-Atlantic states,
      the Sun will be setting while the eclipse is still in
      progress, which offers photographers a splendid
      opportunity to take spectacular pictures. Because the
      eclipse will occur late in the day, make sure you have
      an unobstructed view to the west, where the Sun will
      be located. Maximum eclipse (when the highest
      percentage of the Sun's diameter is blocked by the
      Moon) occurs about one hour after the eclipse starts,
      and the eclipse ends roughly an hour after maximum.

      "During the period of maximum eclipse, the sky will
      appear a little darker than it would normally be, and
      shadows will be sharper," says Erich Landstrom, a NASA
      Educator Ambassador and science teacher at Boynton
      Beach Community High School. "People looking at the
      Sun near maximum eclipse will definitely notice a
      dramatic change. It will appear as if an invisible
      monster has taken a huge bite out of our Sun."

      Dr. Marc Flesher, optometrist with Eye-Site Optical
      Studio in Boynton Beach, cautions that it is extremely
      dangerous to look directly at the blinding light of
      the Sun, especially during a partial eclipse. "A
      partially-eclipsed Sun is just as dangerous to look at
      as a non-eclipsed Sun," he warns. "The Sun's visible
      and invisible rays can cause serious damage to
      sensitive eye tissue, often without the person being
      immediately aware of it. When an eclipse happens,
      enthusiasm can overwhelm common sense, and people,
      especially children, sometimes stare at the Sun for
      too long."

      Two methods for safe viewing of the solar eclipse will
      be available at the Boynton Beach City Library
      (weather permitting). The Science Department at
      Boynton Beach Community High School will be providing
      a 10� Dobsonian reflecting telescope, specially fitted
      with a full-aperture glass solar filter designed to
      block 99.999% of incoming sunlight. Astronomers from
      the Astronomical Society of the Palm Beaches will be
      on-hand, guiding the telescope viewing.

      Dr. Flesher has donated 200 pairs of eclipse glasses
      made from special aluminized polyester filters. The
      glasses will be given away to students at the Boynton
      Beach City Library during the eclipse, while supplies
      last. He points out that pinhole cameras and indirect
      projection from telescopes all provide safe ways to
      watch the eclipse, but "viewing the eclipsed Sun
      directly provides the most dramatic views. To do that,
      you need a filter that blocks not just visible light
      but also ultraviolet and infrared light. I'm happy to
      help share with students the safe Sun."

      He adds, "Partial eclipses are fun to watch, but only
      if you know how to do so safely. Never look directly
      at the Sun. Even a tiny bit of the Sun peeking out
      from behind the Moon is enough to cause serious eye
      damage. Even at sunset. Peering at the Sun through
      sunglasses, compact discs, exposed film, and smoked
      glass is NOT okay and is just NOT safe!"

      One can view an eclipse safely by projecting an image
      of the Sun. One easy way is to make a pinhole
      projector. Take two pieces of cardboard or thick
      paper. Prick a pinhole in one. Then stand with your
      back to the Sun, and let sunlight pass through the
      hole and onto the other sheet. You'll get a small but
      distinct inverted image of the eclipsed Sun. Try using
      different sized holes. A large hole gives a bright but
      fuzzy image of the Sun, while a small hole yields a
      dim but sharp image.

      Here are times of deepest solar eclipse for selected
      cities arranged by time zone, and the magnitude, or
      fraction of the solar diameter covered by the Moon.

      MST: Phoenix AZ 2:57 p.m. (0.04).
      CDT: Houston TX 5:11 p.m. (0.30); Oklahoma City OK
      5:11 p.m. (0.11); New Orleans LA 5:15 p.m. (0.31);
      Memphis TN 5:15 p.m. (0.15); St. Louis MO 5:15 p.m.

      EDT: Louisville KY 6:17 p.m. (0.07); Atlanta GA 6:18
      p.m. (0.21); Tallahassee FL 6:19 p.m. (0.32);
      Washington DC 6:19 p.m. (0.05); Philadelphia PA 6:19
      p.m. (0.02); West Palm Beach, FL 6:21 p.m. (0.43);

      The next North American total solar eclipse will
      happen on August 21, 2017. Totality will last 2
      minutes and 40 seconds.

      Erich Landstrom, NASA SEU Educator Ambassador
      Seeing and Exploring the Structure and Evolution of the Universe

      Science fiction & science fact stranger than fiction.
      Listen Monday mornings on http://www.SCIFIOVERDRIVE.com

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