This is a sponsored post on behalf of U.S. Cellular. They inspired me to share my 5 facts you need to know about the solar eclipse with you. However, all opinions, as always, are 100% mine. Are you planning to watch the solar eclipse on August 21st? Believe it or not, our schools are closed that day! The superintendent said he were afraid of traffic issues, so he is letting the kids stay home to view this historic event. When we view it, we will have either my iPhone or tablet from U.S. Cellular.
With viewing a solar eclipse, there are rules you need to follow. This is true for safely viewing it, to when to see it and how to properly capture this historic moment! I did some research and found some great information on the solar eclipse. I was really in the dark (hee hee) when it came to how much I knew about this seldom seen anomaly. I narrowed down my research to these top 5 facts you need to know about the solar eclipse:
What Is It: Not everyone knows what a solar eclipse is. I wasn’t 100% sure myself! Basically, it is when our view of the sun is blocked by the moon. When the moon lines up between the sun and Earth, the moon casts a shadow on Earth. We get a solar eclipse a few times a year, but the last total solar eclipse we had in the USA was 38 years ago! The last time a shadow crossed the lower 48 United States from coast to coast in 99 years!
How Long Will It Last: The solar eclipse on August 21st will cover 2,496 miles over a span of 90.7 minutes. The total duration of totality for this eclipse will be 2 minutes and 40 seconds.
Can You See It: This is the most asked question. Regardless of where you live, you will be able to see some percentage of the eclipse. Some states will see just 25% while others will see 100%. You can look here to see the best times to view the eclipse in your area. You can also watch a live stream from NASA.
How Can You View It: You can view the eclipse safely with special glasses or a filter. NASA recommends buying your glasses from any of these three manufacturers: Rainbow Symphony, American Paper Optics, and Thousand Oaks Optical. I just ordered mine!
Can You Capture It: Yes! You can capture it with several devices including your smartphone or a drone. You will need a special filter, except for the brief time when the moon entirely blocks the sun’s face.
So, you are ready to see your solar eclipse! Now you need to know how to best capture that event on film or video! Here are a few tips to do that in the best and safest way possible.
- Do not use a camera flash. It will ruin the dark adaptation of people’s eyes and could spoil the event for the people around you.
- Experiment with your smartphone camera settings ahead of time. You may want to download the Camera+ or NightCap Camera for iPhone and
iPad or Night Camera for Android devices. These apps can give you higher quality photos and video in low light.
- Avoid zooming into the eclipse as it will give you a pixelated, enlarged image that will not show much detail.
- Drones can catch video of the approaching and retreating shadow of the moon as it crosses the landscape. However, drones are not good for catching the eclipse itself. When flying a drone, avoid populated areas and do not fly a drone between crowds and the eclipse.
Do you plan to watch the solar eclipse? What safety precautions are you planning to take? I would love to hear in the comments below!