Sky's Up July-September 2017 - Page 26


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In this recurring feature , Sky ’ s Up gives students the opportunity to ask 10 Questions to leading astronomers , space explorers , scientists and cosmologists . o o o The questions for this installment were submitted by students at Truman Middle School in St . Joseph , Mo .

Solar power

As a professional astronomer at NASA ’ s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and a committed amateur astronomer at home and at his California observatory , Steve Edberg has witnessed countless celestial spectacles . Even with this constant bombardment of new astronomical experiences , his decades-long fondness for eclipses has never dulled . “ My first recollection of seeing a solar eclipse is of the total eclipse that crossed Alaska , Canada and the extreme northeastern U . S . in July 1963 ,” Edberg said . “ My family was visiting Chicago at the time , and I just couldn ’ t convince anyone to make the 800-mile drive to the path of totality . Instead , I just saw the deep partial eclipse there .” Since that fateful day , the self-proclaimed avid eclipse chaser has organized viewing expeditions and observed 16 total eclipses from land , sea and air ; five annular eclipses ; numerous partial eclipses ; and a wide variety of other
COURTESY OF Steve Edberg

JPL ’ s Steve Edberg shines a light on our favorite star

transitory events involving stars , planets and asteroids . “ The ‘ action ’ in the sky , the alignment and the spectacular views attract me to these events and the others related to total eclipses ,” he said . “ The only similar events with the suspense and adrenaline rush were landings of the space shuttle that I ’ ve seen at Edwards Air Force Base and Kennedy Space Center . In his professional capacity at JPL , Edberg has worked on a variety of NASA projects including the Galileo mission to Jupiter and the Cassini mission to Saturn . He has served as Coordinator for Amateur Observations for the International Halley Watch and was executive director of the Riverside Telescope Conference , Inc . for 22 years . He also has been honored by the International Astronomical Union with the formal naming of the asteroid 1985QQ as ( 3672 ) Stevedberg . In this installment of 10 Questions , Edberg discusses eclipse phenomena and solar science .
Sky ’ s Up
idaho wyoming The Moon’s umbral shadow will cross the Snake River into Idaho a few seconds shy of 10:25 a.m. PDT and race across the state in about 10 minutes. Just over 300,000 people live in the path of totality in Idaho, but population density will balloon dramatically as travelers descend into the quiet communities along the path. One respected website (www. estimates that Idaho could see between 93,000 and 370,000 visitors for the eclipse because it is the easiest section of the path for millions of people from southern California, Arizona, Utah, Nevada and Montana to access. The prospect of favorable weather along parts of the path will also be an attractive factor. On a small part of its front end and a broader section of its back end, event spotlight the shadow’s course through Idaho Crater Adventures intersects with portions of the Snake This unusual viewing River Plain. Clouds that may plague the site will let you observe 2 more mountainous locales are likely to minutes and 17 seconds evaporate in the lowland valley formed of totality from the rim of by the river. Idaho Falls, the largest an extinct volcano near city in the path of totality in the state, Menan. Parking fees for lies in the plain. According to Jay the day of the eclipse start Anderson, the meteorologist behind at $20. Reservations for, nearby airport camping and RV sites can observations for Idaho Falls show also be purchased. For more that two-thirds of August skies are information, click here. clear or have only scattered cloud coverage. If the plain terrain keeps clouds at bay, those in Idaho Falls will be treated to 1 minute and 48 seconds of totality. To gain almost 30 additional seconds of precious totality time, observers can travel less than 30 miles northeast of Idaho Falls to Rexburg. This community of around 27,000 people sits on the centerline and offers two minutes and 17 seconds of totality. Although your best bet for cloud-free viewing may be in the Snake River Plain, you shouldn’t rule out higher elevations. A significant chunk of the narrow path passes over the rugged Sawtooth Range. As eclipse day draws nearer, you may opt for a more adventurous locale if the forecasts are friendly for eclipse viewing. At 12,662 feet, Borah Peak is the highest point in Idaho, and it is very close to the heart of the path of totality. This impressive jewel in the Lost River Range will spend 2 minutes and 11 seconds in the Moon’s umbra. Large and small public and private observing events and sites will be scattered across the state. Among those are three official NASA viewing sites — Totality on the Top of Idaho in Mackay; Valley of the Tetons Library, which is just minutes away from the centerline city of Driggs; and The Museum of Idaho in Idaho Falls. At this last event, representatives from NASA and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory will team up with the museum for a four-day event featuring expert lectures, demonstrations and the “Space: Journey to our Future” exhibit. NASA wi ͼͥѡͥє)́ѕ٥ͥɽЁѥȁѡ͔ЀЁ5PѡMոݥЁЁѡ]彵ɑȁ́ѡ)5é͡܁́Եєɕɽ́ѡхє́ЁɅ́ѡ)յɄݥЁѡɅȁѡɅQѽ̸Yͥѽ́ѼѡɅQѽ)9ѥAɬݥɥɔѡȁѕ́ѽх䁉Ёѡɽݑ)ݥͼЁ́хЁѼٔ䁽ѥѼЁѼѡɥЁи)Qɉ)ͽ!Ёݥͽȁѕ͕́́)ѽх丁Aɕ٥́ݕѡȁ͕مѥ̀ͽ͡܁ѡЁ)ٕɅՑ́ЁɍиQ́ٽɅɔݡ́Ք)ɝЁѼ́م䁱ѥѡɝ́٥́ѡQѽ̰ݡ)ɴՙȁѼѡݕаݥѡ́ፕЁ٥ݥѥ=ѡ)䁽ѡ͔ѡ]彵Mхɝ饹ɝѥݥЁՉ)٥ݥٕЁЁѡ͔M܁-5չх)ͽ=ɝ́ݥ)ٔͅͽȁ͕́ȁͅͽȁѕ͍͕́Ёȁ٥ݥɥ)̸͕́ѡѕɱٕ́аЁչ́ݕIٕѽM͡)5ѕɽЁ)ͽѕ́ѡЁɽѽЁ٥܁ѡ)䁉ЁѡЁ٥ݥѥ]彵Ёͼѡ)ȁѡݡ͔ɅQɅѕɸѥ́ѡѠٕ́)ѕɅݥѠͥٔ٥̸=ѡЁ́Ʌѡѕѥ́)ѕȁɽ́́ Ȱ]弸ݡɔѡɽ1Քݥ)́ՅٕѥɥȁѼѡ͔Qéѡѥѽх䀠)ѕ́؁͕̤́݅䁅́ѡձȁٕ)ݥѠѡ́]彵ѥɹ́ɕЀ԰ѡхїé́ѡɕͥ́ɕͥ)ѡɽ܁Ѡ=͔ݕɕхɥ͔ѥѕ́ݕѼȰ٥ͥѽ́ݥ݅ɴ)ѡѽхѼͽѡ́ɥ)%ѥ́ѡѕɱѡѠѽх)ɥ̃5Ր1IɜMх()M䃊d)U)]彵ѥ́ѡѕɱѡѠѽх)ɕ́9Ʌ ɥAɬ ȃ ɽݡЃ՝̃م٥MхєAɬ)5̃AѡȁI͕ٽ̃A٥M͡Yф])ѥѱ)M䃊d)U) =UIQMd=5iȰܹɕɥ͔) Ȱ]弸)Q́ѽݸɽչݥ)͕́ձѥݕͥѱ)ȁѡ͔%ѥѼ她)ѡѕɱ ȁ́)ѕѥȁٽɅݕѡȸ)Qɕéɽ́ɔͼ)ѡɽ1Քݥ)ѡȁՅٕѥɽ (ܤѡ́ɔѡ͔)Qٕ́ЁݥՑ幽є)ɕ́ɕɕݹ)͔ѡɥ丁5ձѥ͕٥)ͥѕ́ɔɕѡɽ՝Ёѡ)丁=ѡЁ́Ѽ٥ͥ)͕́ȹݡ)Ѡɕ٥ݥ)Սѥ̸ٕ ȁ́ͼ)ݼѥ́ѡЁ9M)ѡɅѽɥմݥ͔ѼɽՍ)ٔɽЁѡѽхͽ)͔QхݥЀ)5P ȁݥЁȀ)ѕ́؁̸͕(