Pre-Eclipse Block Party
Get ready for the great North American eclipse that occurs on August 21, 2017—people across the U.S. will be able to see a partial to total eclipse of the Sun! (Most Minnesotans will experience around 80% totaltity.)
Prepare for this rare sight one week ahead of the big show! Enjoy University of Minnesota scientist talks (see below), hands-on activities, solar telescope observing, and free mini ExploraDome planetarium shows! Also, pick up your own pair of solar viewing glasses (while supplies last). Learn everything you'll need to know to safely catch your view of the eclipse—no matter where you might be on August 21.
Sunday, August 13, 2017
Talks will be approximately 20 minutes in length with time for Q&A at the end.
12:30 - A Rare Look at the Sun's Corona
Lindsay Glesener, Physics and Astronomy
Solar eclipses are beautiful and fascinating events, and they also offer rare opportunities to study the elusive corona -- the outermost layer of the Sun's atmosphere. With a temperature hundreds of times greater than that of the Sun's surface, the mysterious corona is governed by strong magnetic fields that control all structure and motion. Explore the fascinating nature of the outer layers of the Sun and learn how you can contribute to solar science while you view the eclipse!
1:00 & 2:00 - Live-Stream the Eclipse from the Stratosphere
James Flaten, Aerospace Engineering & Mechanics
NASA’s Space Grant Consortia--representing 30 states--are fielding teams of college students to develop light-weight video-telemetry systems to live stream the view of the shadow of the Moon from the stratosphere. On August 21, over 50 ballooning teams will fly into the eclipse's path of totality from Oregon all the way to South Carolina. The U of M stratospheric ballooning team will be on hand to show off flight units, ground station hardware, and talk about their preparations for this nationwide project.
1:30 - Einstein & The Eclipse of 1919
Michel Janssen, Physics & History of Science, Technology, and Medicine
Measurements made during the solar eclipse of May 29, 1919 made headlines on both sides of the Atlantic--scientists found that gravity bends light. This announcement was in agreement with the predictions of Albert Einstein's 1915 general theory of relativity. Overnight, Einstein, already well-known among physicists, became the world's first and greatest scientific superstar.
Mini ExploraDome Shows
Get ready to explore the universe as you never have before in our immersive (and portable) planetarium! Free tickets will be given out on a first come first served basis starting at 12:00 & 1:00 pm. Shows start every 20 minutes beginning at 12:20 pm.