Ok, so we aren’t talking about a total eclipse here, but rather a partial eclipse. When is it you ask? October 23rd and our friends from the Louisville Astronomical Society will be here at the William F. Miles Community Garden in Beckley Creek Park from 5:00-7:00 PM to watch it with us. We invite you all to join us that evening to watch the partial solar eclipse!
Some of you may be wondering what an eclipse even is, or what it means that this one is partial?
To begin, we have two types of eclipses: lunar and solar. A lunar eclipse occurs when the Earth passes between the Moon and the Sun, leaving the Earth’s shadow to obscure the moon. This type of eclipse is safe to view with the naked eye, and it only occurs at night (if we have a full moon). A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes between the Earth and the Sun, blocking the Sun from our view on Earth. It occurs during the day and is rarer than it’s counterpart eclipse and must be viewed with either protective eye gear or with a pinhole projector.
Within the spectrum of the lunar and solar eclipse there are subsets. For the sake of time, I’m going to focus on the Partial Solar Eclipse as that is what we will be watching on the 23rd. A partial eclipse occurs, when, you guessed it – when only part of the Sun is covered by the shadow of the Moon. While we are fortunate enough to see part of the partial eclipse, our friends to the north and west will have a better view.
The partial eclipse will look a little something like this:
The map above shows how the partial eclipse will look around the continent. If you’re interested in seeing the partial eclipse on 10/23/14, please join us to safely view this incredible sight using LAS equipment at the William F. Miles Community Garden, just inside the Shelbyville Rd. entrance to Beckley Creek Park.
Interested in learning when other solar or lunar eclipses will occur? Check out http://eclipse.gsfc.nasa.gov/eclipse.html for more information.
Want to make your own pinhole projector? The Clark Planetarium has some great directions, found here: http://clarkplanetarium.org/how-to-make-a-pinhole-projector/.
Story by Meghan Chlopek, Interpretive Ranger at The ParklandsMegan was a Volunteer at the Parklands before joining the Interpretive Ranger team this fall. She hails from the University of Louisville with her Bachelors in Environmental Geography and comes to us with 4.5 years of education and programming experience from the Kentucky Science Center. Megan’s favorite thing to do at the park is kayak down Floyds Fork with her husband and friends. Otherwise, you can find her hiking and camping with her husband and dog.