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I Didn’t Know That: Solar Eclipse

BSU quad full of solar eclipse spectators

Rare opportunity

On Saturday, October 14, the first annular solar eclipse visible in the area since May 20, 2012, and the last one that will be visible from Idaho until 2046 will appear!

An annular eclipse occurs when the moon passes in front of the sun’s disk, blocking out all but a thin, circular outline of light known as “the ring of fire”. The process will take around 2 hours. The climax of the eclipse will cause the sky to become dark as if it were dawn or dusk for about five minutes. Listen to Boise State Public Radio to learn more from Dr. Irwin Horowitz.

At least a partial eclipse will be visible across all 49 states, including Idaho. That means you get to watch the eclipse right here at Boise State! The solar eclipse viewing party is on the Intramural Field from 8:30-11:30 a.m. on Saturday, October 14.

You won’t want to miss this rare opportunity so RSVP now!

Making it possible

The AstroTAC outreach of the branch of Boise State Physics’ Central Idaho Dark Sky Reserve STEM Network (known as CIDSRSN pronounced “sid-sir-sin”) is organizing this event, allowing students to view the eclipse safely.

Jackie Westman, a member of CIDSRSN, is excited to give people a place to learn about solar eclipses and experience one in partnership with Bronco Day. “We want people to walk away not only in awe of what they saw but feeling more confident in their knowledge of the subject. We will be discussing the difference between total and annular solar eclipses, how eclipses happen, what the outreach program does across the state and on campus, and the goal of CIDSRSN as a whole.”

Boise is fortunate enough to have some of the most pristine stargazing in all of the United States  According to Jackie, “Nearly 80% of Americans can no longer see the Milky Way; we are incredibly lucky to have access to such an amazing resource right in our backyard, and it takes all of us to continue protecting it.”

Eclipse shades are offered with a donation to the PonyUp campaign (1 pair of glasses for a $5 donation) to support Boise State’s astronomy outreach program.

Schedule of events

7:30 am – Doors Open to the Special Events Center at the Student Union

8:30 am – Presentation on Solar Eclipses

9:30 am – Eclipse Begins (will be viewed outside at the Student Union Intramural Field)

10:24 am – Eclipse Reaches Climax

11:48 am – Eclipse Ends

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  • Molly


    Content Writer