Here Are The 6 Best Ways To Experience This Week's Solar Eclipse

Partial solar eclipseAlexander KesselaarPartial solar eclipse behind the clouds.

A partial solar eclipse, like the one happening this Thursday, will not be visible from across the entire US again until the year 2023. Since the next one is nearly a decade away, you’ll want to get the most out of this one.

Here are five ways you can have fun in the eclipsed sun this Thursday.

Note: Even though this week’s event is only a partial eclipse, you should still protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful light. If you want to look directly at the eclipsed sun, make sure you’re looking through a solar filter, something that’s much stronger than ordinary sunglasses. If you’re looking through a telescope, make sure to attach a filter. Now that we’ve cleared that up, onto the fun.

1. Look Through An Object

As the sun starts to disappear behind the moon, take a look around for spots where light is passing through an object, such as light passing through leaves on a tree. This is an image where the leaves act as a pinhole camera that projects the image of the eclipsed sun onto a nearby wall.

Solar eclipse imagestorbakhopper HE DEADSpaces between leaves project the image of a crescent sun.

2. Look Through Your Hands

If you can’t find any natural pinholes, then you can make one yourself with your hands. Spread your fingers apart and lay one hand over the other, so your fingers look like a large waffle fry.The light will pass in between the slits in your hand and project the crescent sun onto the ground, like in the image below.

Solar eclipse shadowWindell OskayMake your own pinhole to view the solar eclipse.

3. Look Through A Strainer

Another great way to view the eclipse is with some of your kitchen utensils. A draining spoon or a pasta strainer makes fantastic pinholes that will project dozens of solar eclipse shadows for you to enjoy.

Solar eclipse shadowCassidy CurtisA pasta strainer is a great tool for enjoying a solar eclipse.

4. Add A Solar Filter To Your Camera

If you have a decent camera and a solar filter, you can take some great pictures of the partial solar eclipse directly. Believe it or not, the shiny wrapping around your morning Pop-Tart is an effective solar filter. You can see how this guy used a Pop-Tart wrapping to image the sun in the video below.

5. Use Binoculars Or A Telescope

A pair of binoculars or a telescope is the best way to see a solar eclipse up close and personal. And the best part is that you can make a solar filter for either of these instruments for little money with mostly material you have at home. Watch the video below on how to make your own solar filter for your binoculars or telescope.

6. Watch It Live Online

If you cannot view this week’s partial solar eclipse because of cloudy skies or you’re not in a region where the eclipse is visible, you can still get a chance to watch it with the rest of the US and Canada. The live online observatory, Slooh, will be streaming it. You can either watch the event on the Slooh website or right here. The live broadcasting provided below will begin at 5pm EDT (2 pm PDT).

Have some other ideas on how best to experience this week’s solar eclipse? Send them our way at [email protected]

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