|Annular Eclipse, Sancho_Panza|
The Annular Solar Eclipse is happening today!!!
An annular eclipse happens when the new moon moves directly in front of the sun, blocking out all but the outer portion of the solar disk from view. This kind of eclipse presents an apparent ring of fire--the outer edge of the sun--around the moon, also known as an annulus. According to Earth and Sky, "the solar eclipse of 2012 is part of a cycle--called the Saros cycle--that repeats about every 18 years and 10 days. This will be the first annular eclipse to take place in the mainland United States since May 10, 1994, and the next one won’t come until October 14, 2023."
National Geographic says, "To view the eclipse safely, astronomers recommend using either a professionally manufactured solar filter in front of a telescope or camera, or using eclipse viewing glasses that sufficiently reduce the sun's brightness and filter out damaging ultraviolet and infrared radiation.
But probably the safest and easiest way to take in the eclipse is to use the pinhole projection method, Williams College's Pasachoff said.
"Punch a one-eighth to one-quarter-inch hole in a piece of cardboard and use it to create a projection of the partial or annular phases on a wall a few feet away," he said."
And, we are super lucky Reno is on the path to get a great view of this eclipse. Here is a snippet from the Fleischmann Planetarium's website:
"Reno is one of the only cities in the United States that will be very near the central path of this annular eclipse, which will be visible in North America only across parts of the southwestern United States. The period of maximum eclipse as viewed from Reno will be from 6:28-6:33 p.m. on May 20"
And, following the May 20 annular eclipse, a much more rare transit of Venus in front of the Sun will occur on the afternoon of Tuesday, June 5, where we will be able to see the small black dot of Venus crossing the face of the Sun from about 3 p.m. to sunset.