America's total eclipse floods market with fake sunglasses

NASA map

Several aspects of the Earth, moon and sun must line up correctly to create the shadow that will define the 2017 Great American Eclipse. Along with being able to see the sun completely covered, viewers will be exposed to a partial eclipse as well. This is the first total solar eclipse to cross the continental USA since 1979, first one to go coast-to-coast since 1918 - that's 99 years ago.

The Moon's shadow will block the Sun's light, and weather permitting, those within the path of totality will be treated to a view of the Sun's outer atmosphere, called the corona. There is a narrow band, which extends from Salem, Oregon to Charleston, South Carolina, where observers will experience a total eclipse.

The path goes just south of the IN border, which means Fort Wayne will experience a partial solar eclipse with about 85 percent of the sun blocked, Science Central Executive Director Martin S. Fisher said IN a news release.

The ancient Vikings, he said, believed that giant wolves chased the sun and moon and when they caught them an eclipse happened.

America's total eclipse floods market with fake sunglasses

With the date of the total solar eclipse approaching, public libaries have been hosting special programs over the last couple of weeks, and some are also providing eclipse glasses to the public.

NASA has put together a list of what size lens and an example of what you may see using each one.

Looking directly into the sun is risky, even during an eclipse. "The people who see the total eclipse are in the center of the moon's shadow when it hits Earth".

The legitimate glasses, which offer no views outside the eclipse, carry their own hazards, however. The glasses will be given out while supplies last, the library staff said. "Please be sure to keep your headlights on for your safety throughout the entire day of the eclipse". The sun will reach its maximum coverage about 1:20 p.m. and stay that way for nearly three minutes. You're a science teacher - but is there more to it? During a partial solar eclipse, the sun is not almost as bright, so the temptation is to stare at the sun for too long a time. This year's eclipse will be a once- or twice-in-a-lifetime event for many American adults, but if you were born in 2010, you could witness eight total solar eclipses on American soil before turning 70.

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The lenses of some obvious fakes allow the penetration of light from such relatively faint sources as fluorescent lamps, while the only thing one should see through authentic solar-safe filters when looking at objects fainter than the sun is pitch blackness.

Millions of Americans are getting ready to view the next eclipse on August 21, but Dr. Russell Van Gelder from the University of Washington School of Medicine warns blindness is a risk if you don't have proper eye protection. And, some other third-party sellers on the site are giving vague estimates as to when the glasses will arrive or be back in stock, meaning they could arrive before or after the eclipse. You can also make a nice pinhole projector inside a box, such as a large cereal box or shipping box.

Even if it doesn't inspire the next Einstein, this year's eclipse might give rise to a more passionate, more diverse generation of scientists, one that has a deeply personal connection to the motions of the universe. These can easily be made by simply poking a pin-sized hole (thus the name) in a piece of cardboard, and then holding the cardboard such that the sunlight passes through the hole and falls onto a viewing surface (a white piece of paper, sidewalk, garage door, etc.) To focus the image, the observer simply moves the cardboard farther or nearer from the viewing surface.

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