Thousands of people wearing special eclipse glasses watched a partial solar eclipse at CU's Folsom Field in 2012.

Credit:  Casey A. Cass/University of Colorado

The Great American Eclipse is on Monday, Aug. 21. We've got a procrastinator's guide to the total eclipse here. Staying in Colorado? Doug Duncan, director of the Fiske Planetarium in Boulder offered Colorado Matters some ideas.

Here's a simple one if you're at home or work: Step outside and look under a leafy tree. You’ll see hundreds of little crescent shadows. That's because leaves act like pinhole cameras, casting the shadow of the eclipse onto the ground. 

If you’re lucky enough to be traveling to an area where the eclipse will be total, here's a pro tip: Glance away from the sun and observe the color of the horizon - it’s like a 360 degree sunset.

Duncan, who has seen close to 10 of these events, says perhaps the best view of the partial eclipse will be reserved for a group of scientists at Southwest Research Institute in Boulder.  Their specially-designed telescopes will be aboard two NASA jets that will be chasing the eclipse as it crosses the United States.  The data they gather will provide insight into the formation of the sun's corona, as well as assist in a heat map of the planet Mercury.
 
Listen to Duncan's conversation with Colorado Matters for more pro tips.
 

Scientists at Southwest Research Institute in Boulder will capture extended images during the solar eclipse with telescopes mounted on two NASA jets.  Their research will shed light on the sun's corona and the heat patterns of Mercury.

 

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