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vigilius

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Solar Eclipse 2017
« on: June 06, 2017, 12:26:36 PM »
August 21 is coming! The great total eclipse of the sun!

Here in this thread, let's share eclipse plans, info on selected eclipse-viewing equipment, thoughts on private viewing in the country vs. watching with astronomy clubs, and any other thoughts. After the eclipse let's have lots of pictures, please.

Jim Pettit

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #1 on: June 06, 2017, 08:40:22 PM »
Three ground-mounted cameras, plus two UAVs.

But you've got to share about the UAVs. UAVs? To look back down at the ground and see the shadow crossing beneath?

Correct. Mostly. From 400' (the legal maximum) or higher (if I request a waiver), I would like to look in the direction of the umbra as it approaches at some two miles a second, then turn around to watch it depart at the same speed. Of course, the umbra edge is far from sharp, but it should still make for some nice video (especially if there are some scattered fair-weather cumulus around). Too, I'm curious whether shadow bands will show any detectable pattern when viewed from a few hundred feet in 4K. I imagine they'll be random and noisy, but you never know...

My main concern is flying far enough away from people that the buzzing doesn't distract from the experience for others. But I think I'll be in good shape...

I'll also have a tripod-mounted DSLR, along with two GoPro cameras, one to capture real-time video of the event, and the other to capture a full-screen time lapse.

This will--obviously--be the most well-documented solar eclipse of all time. Why not join in the fun?

vigilius

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2017, 05:49:29 AM »
One thing about this eclipse I hadn't originally thought of:

But people from all over the U.S. will be flocking to the centerline to experience the rare and amazing celestial event that is totality. As with most crowds of people heading to a major event, there will be traffic — lots and lots of traffic.
from:
https://www.space.com/36471-how-to-survive-total-solar-eclipse-2017.html

And I have to confirm, I was looking at motel reservations a couple of months ago and things were filling up and some places were advertising significantly marked-up room rates.

vigilius

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2017, 05:55:05 AM »
I do recall seeing a very nice annular eclipse that was visible across much of the southeastern USA in 1984 and there was a very dramatic wind effect that I didn't give much thought to at the time, but:

"As the sun disappears behind the moon the ground suddenly cools, just like at sunset. This means warm air stops rising from the ground, causing a drop in wind speed and a shift in its direction, as the slowing of the air by the Earth's surface changes.

Read more at: https://phys.org/news/2016-08-mystery-eclipse-years.html#jCp

vigilius

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2017, 06:06:39 AM »
It occurs to me that since I started this thread I should insert some standard safety warnings-
(Like, "don't look straight at the sun!")

NASA and the AAS recommend that solar-viewing or eclipse glasses meet the current international standard: ISO 12312-2. Some older solar-viewing glasses may meet previous standards for eye protection, but not the new international standard

https://www.space.com/35555-total-solar-eclipse-safety-tips.html

Though when at totality there may be a couple of blessed minutes when you can actually see the corona:

"If you are within the path of totality, remove your solar filter only when the moon completely covers the sun's bright face," according to the official safety information sheet.

(Jim, I am certain you do not need any of this info, just throwing it in for form's sake. BTW how are you going to operate all that hardware at once?)
« Last Edit: June 11, 2017, 06:18:47 AM by vigilius »

vigilius

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2017, 06:26:03 AM »
Here's hoping I get to a clear patch of sky and see the corona during totality....      .....don't plan on having a lot of equipment along, just going so I can watch.

Jim Pettit

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2017, 03:33:16 PM »
BTW how are you going to operate all that hardware at once?)

With redundant GPS, long battery life, and other positioning systems, my UAVs can be flown into position five or so minutes before totality, then be monitored but mostly hands-off for the duration. The Go-Pros can be set up half an hour in advance, and then left alone. The DSLR is more hands-on, of course, so I'll be messing with that, but won't get bent out of shape if I miss some shots because I'm too busy staring slack-jawed at the corona and everything else...

magnamentis

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #7 on: June 11, 2017, 06:05:11 PM »
Here's hoping I get to a clear patch of sky and see the corona during totality....      .....don't plan on having a lot of equipment along, just going so I can watch.

congrats, until now i was extremely "proud" of the pics i made in france Solar eclipse of August 11, 1999 but this your image is amazing :-) really really love that photo of yours :-)

below i attached on of series which i call the diamond because it looks like a ring with a diamond, of course i have various iterations of enhanced as well as blueish originals :-)
http://magnamentis.com
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vigilius

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #8 on: June 15, 2017, 05:52:42 AM »
Many towns and universities along the path are planning events, Southern Illinois University looks like they're doing a good one, 10,000 tickets they have to see it in their football stadium.

http://eclipse.siu.edu/

Didn't want to commit to something like this on account of not knowing the weather, but in any event I think I would be happier in a more isolated spot.

vigilius

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #9 on: June 19, 2017, 07:21:09 AM »
Excellent interactive map tool from NASA, zoom in to your location and it shows the time of eclipse onset, totality, etc.

https://eclipse2017.nasa.gov/sites/default/files/interactive_map/index.html

vigilius

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Sigmetnow

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #11 on: July 04, 2017, 07:48:57 PM »
Tip for live viewing:  A really cheap, and really safe, method for viewing the eclipse is to put a pinhole in a piece of cardboard and let the spot of light fall onto a white surface. The hole acts like a camera lens; you can even see larger sunspots that way.  Allows for group viewing.  And no risk of eye damage! :)
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

vigilius

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Jim Pettit

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #13 on: July 20, 2017, 02:08:53 PM »
Location: chosen (on the Great Plains in a very rural area with unlimited vistas to the horizons, and numerous NW-SE roads and highways for movement in case of clouds and crowds. Primary spot is exactly on the centerline of the path of totality, with a near-maximum of 2m 39.2s).
Flight: booked
Room: reserved
Rental car: selected
Cameras: Nikon DSLR; 2 aerial-mounted 4K HD video; 5 GoPros (1 Black; 4 Sessions)
Time off from work projects: blocked out.

Again, I'm not interested in capturing close-up images of the solar corona and so on; I'll leave those for people with much better equipment and know-how than I have. I want to instead capture multiple points of view of the entire event from both the ground and the air, including a technology-free 15 minutes or so from about five minutes before C2 until roughly five minutes after C3 where I can just enjoy the whole thing hands-free. I figure that'll be enough to help me relive the experience...

Sigmetnow

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #14 on: July 23, 2017, 07:54:29 PM »
NASA wants You to report on cloud and temperature changes that occur during the eclipse.

“No matter where you are in North America, whether it’s cloudy, clear or rainy, NASA wants as many people as possible to help with this citizen science project,” said Kristen Weaver, deputy coordinator for the project. “We want to inspire a million eclipse viewers to become eclipse scientists.”

NASA Invites You to Become a Citizen Scientist During US Total Solar Eclipse
https://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/2017/nasa-invites-you-to-become-a-citizen-scientist-during-us-total-solar-eclipse
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

vigilius

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #15 on: July 24, 2017, 12:45:44 PM »
NASA wants You to report on cloud and temperature changes that occur during the eclipse.

Thanks for the great link!

including a technology-free 15 minutes or so from about five minutes before C2 until roughly five minutes after C3 where I can just enjoy the whole thing hands-free. I figure that'll be enough to help me relive the experience...

Good advice- mustn't get too distracted by tech to enjoy the thing, in my case just going to have enough to make a memento or two.

vigilius

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #16 on: August 02, 2017, 04:36:07 AM »

vigilius

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #17 on: August 21, 2017, 03:42:15 AM »
Well, the great day is upon us. I am mostly going to enjoy the experience, not to generate imagery but I sure hope I get to see some stuff posted. Jim, you got your whirlybirds powered up and ready?

TerryM

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #18 on: August 23, 2017, 01:36:12 PM »
I returned from the (near) north in time for THE EVENT, at a K-W University viewing party. A Canadian news team wanted comments from the older demographic & apparently decided I was the most obviously aged of the attendees.
Unable to decide if this was an insult, or only a reasonable assumption on their part, I consented to the interview & babbled of how these were memories that withstood the test of time, or some such BS.
Didn't get anything in re. global warming, but did get to plug the local Mensa group.


One of the unexpected happenings was the grounding of a large number of Canadian Geese as the darkness increased, then their unexpected flight just as we past the maximum.


Terry
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For those that may have seen the interview, it's proof that I haven't aged since my ~decade old avatar.  :)

Jim Pettit

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #19 on: August 23, 2017, 02:05:55 PM »
Just got back home after my eclipse chase.

The weather was terrible, so I woke up Monday morning and drove a few hundreds miles into the Nebraska corn and soybean fields, and finally found a fairly deserted farm road directly on the centerline. Had about an hour to set up the GoPro cameras and get the drone ready.

I wasn't disappointed.

Many people far more eloquent than me have described the experience in loving detail, so I won't even try, other than to say this: that was the single most amazing natural phenomenon I've ever witnessed--and I've seen many. So: the next US-based TSE is in, of course, 2024. But there are a pair visible in South America over the next few years, so I'm already checking ticket prices...


Jim Pettit

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #20 on: August 23, 2017, 06:21:36 PM »
I'll have time to post more later, but here's a very short time lapse video of the eclipse before, during, and after totality as the moon's umbra raced along the cloud tops to the east-southeast across Nebraska. Taken with a GoPro Session 4 camera.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hSU9DCW2-8s

(Be sure to watch in full-screen 4K)
« Last Edit: August 23, 2017, 06:58:22 PM by Jim Pettit »

Rob Dekker

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #21 on: Today at 05:13:57 AM »
We just returned from Oregon, after a total of 1000 mile road trip. But it was worth every mile.
This was my first 'total eclipse', and what a unique experience it was !

I completely agree with Jim that this was "the single most amazing natural phenomenon I've ever witnessed".

We were very lucky to find a spot in the 'total' band with clear skies and not too much smoke (lots of wildfires in Oregon).

I'd like to share a few pictures and a video of the 2 minutes that were 'total'.

First one is one of the corona, taken with a 300 mm lens.
The light from the corona is about as bright as the full moon, but it is a bit blue-er, and since it just appears so sudden (really, the transition from sunlight to corona-light goes in seconds) it creates a very weird feeling. Something out of this world, almost scary, definitely 'awe' some and unlike anything I've experienced before.

It's a bit over-exposed, but you must get the idea.
« Last Edit: Today at 05:43:01 AM by Rob Dekker »

Rob Dekker

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #22 on: Today at 05:32:00 AM »
Next picture is one taken by my wife, on an iphone of all devices !
You see the total eclipse, with the glow in the distance where the shadow ends. Almost like a sunrise but all around.

Also note the stripe of an airplane. I'm pretty sure that is the NASA G3 plane that was following the shadow over Oregon.

Rob Dekker

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #23 on: Today at 05:38:57 AM »
Finally I have a video. However, does anyone know how I can upload an mov file ?
« Last Edit: Today at 07:51:51 AM by Rob Dekker »

Neven

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Re: Solar Eclipse 2017
« Reply #24 on: Today at 08:37:22 AM »
I don't believe you can. You need to upload it to YouTube, VImeo or DailyMotion or some such and then post the link. If you post a YouTube link without the S in https, it should be viewable directly.
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