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Aug 21 2017

Eclipse

There is no dark side of the Moon really. As a matter of fact it’s all dark.

Astronomical events are rarely as spectacular as you imagine. For one thing they happen very, very slooowly, so you have to have a lot of patience. Another thing is that atmospheric conditions are seldom ideal, there’s a reason the best and biggest optical telescopes are located high up in extremely dry places.

Finally, you may find yourself out of position to experience their maximum effect. I for instance will be in the far Northeast and will be lucky to observe 50% totality (probably more like 33%) which is not as much as it seems. If it is a dark sky event like a Comet or Meteor Showers light pollution will diminish it more than you usually realize, Cities pump out a lot of light and it shoots straight up and spreads in the atmosphere more than you think (16 miles, the curvature of the Earth, is nowhere near enough. You need like 40 – 60 miles.)

What you will see, unless you are in the Umbra or close, is a noticeable decline in ambient light like a cloud only it’s everywhere like twilight and faster. If it gets dark enough and you’re not looking at the Sun (and please don’t. It really will burn out your retinas, you’ll go blind, and there will be nothing anyone can do.) and you look in the sky away from the Sun you’ll see some of the brig

Universe big. Really, really big. Time long. Really, really long. You’re lucky to be around for any of it.

1 comment

  1. ek hornbeck

    Vent Hole

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