from the so-bright-I-have-to-wear-shades dept.
The Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics has released an app for the upcoming August 21st solar eclipse:
With solar safety glasses available at every counter and an expected 2–7 million Americans traveling to the path of totality — the nearly 3,000-mile-long arc from the coast near Salem, Ore., to Charleston, S.C., in which a view of the total eclipse is possible — it is clear that eclipse fever has swept the country. Seeing an opportunity to educate and inspire a new wave of astronomers, the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) has released a smartphone app, [Smithsonian] Eclipse 2017, available on iOS and Android.
"We haven't had an eclipse cross the United States like this in nearly 100 years," says CfA spokesperson Tyler Jump. "Because it's such a rare and exciting event, we wanted to create an interactive guide that everyone could enjoy. Even if you're not in the path of totality, our app allows you to calculate exactly how much of an eclipse you'll be able to see and get a preview with our eclipse simulation. It's also a great opportunity to highlight some of Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory's (SAO) solar research. SAO was founded in large part to study the sun, and we've been doing so now for more than a century."
The free app comes with a host of resources for the amateur astronomer. A comprehensive viewing guide offers a crash course in the science behind eclipses and instructions on how to safely observe the celestial phenomenon. Videos from the Solar Dynamics Observatory show the sun in different wavelengths, revealing the many layers of solar activity. Users can also access an interactive eclipse map, which gives lunar transit times and simulated views for any location in the United States.
Various science experiments will take place during the eclipse.