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  In keeping with the mission of the Vigo County Conservation

 Club, James C. Wallace II; Astronomer-in-Residence will be

 hosting his night sky  educational program, entitled:

 Wabash Valley’s Eye On The Sky, a monthly  program devoted

 to observing  and learning about the night sky above the  Wabash Valley. This program is

 open to the general public and is free-of-charge. This program

 will feature educational talks about the constellations,  planets,

 lunar lore and observations of the International Space Station  (when visible).

    The Wabash Valley’s Eye on the Sky program is a monthly

 program devoted to current night sky  events,  however; these

 programs are  weather-dependent and will not occur during

  inclement weather or  cloudy  skies.

 


  Today is the third full day of the final lunar cycle before the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Vigo County Conservation Club, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10 and Oilvet University in Murphysboro, Illinois, will be on site in southern Illinois to webcast the event live. Stay tuned for more information regarding our webcast in the coming days.

Total Solar Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

Annular Solar Eclipse

Not every solar eclipse is a total one. When the Moon is farther away in its orbit than usual, it appears too small to completely cover the Sun’s disk. During such an event, a bright ring of sunlight shines around the Moon. This type of eclipse is a called an “annular” eclipse. It comes from the Latin word “annulus” which means “ring”.

The period of annularity during such an eclipse can last anywhere from 5 or 6 minutes to up to 12 minutes. However, even though the Sun is mostly covered by the Moon, enough bright sunlight escapes during annularity that observers cannot ever look at the Sun directly. These events require eye protection

 throughout the entire eclipse.

   Today is the second full day of the final lunar  cycle before the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Vigo County Conservation Club, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10 and Oilvet University in Murphysboro, Illinois, will be on site in southern Illinois to webcast the event live. Stay tuned for more information regarding our webcast in the coming days.

Total Solar Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

Total Solar Eclipse

A total solar eclipse occurs when the Moon completely blocks the solar disk. In a total solar eclipse, the narrowest part of the path (where the Sun is completely blocked and the Moon casts its darkest shadow (called the umbra)) is called the “zone of totality”.

Observers in this path see a darkened Sun (often described as a “hole in the sky”) with the ghostly glow of the solar corona extending out to space. A phenomenon called “Bailey’s Beads” often appears as sunlight shines out through valleys on the lunar surface. If the Sun is active, observers can also see solar prominences, loops, and flares during totality. A total solar eclipse is the ONLY time when it is safe to look directly at the Sun. ALL other solar observations (even in partial phases) require special solar filters so that you do not harm your eyes.

Total solar eclipses have not always been visible from Earth. In the past, the Moon was too close to Earth and during eclipses it completely blotted out the Sun’s disk. Over time, the lunar orbit has changed at the rate of just over 2 cm per year and in the current epoch, the alignment is nearly perfect at times. However, the Moon’s orbit will continue to widen, and in perhaps 600 million years, total solar eclipses will no longer occur. Instead, future
observers will see partial and  

         annular eclipses only.

The countdown has begun! Only 18 days remain before the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Vigo County Conservation Club, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10 and will be on site in Carbondale, Illinois to webcast the event live. Stay tuned for more information regarding our webcast in the coming days.


Total Solar Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

The rise and fall of the tides on Earth is caused by the Moon.

There are two bulges in the Earth due to the gravitational pull that the Moon exerts; one on the side facing the Moon, and the other on the opposite side that faces away from the Moon, The bulges move around the oceans as the Earth rotates, causing high and low tides around the globe.

 LINKS

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     The countdown has begun! Only 22 days remain before the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Vigo County Conservation Club, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10 and Oilvet University in Murphysboro, Illinois, will be on site in southern Illinois to webcast the event live. Stay tuned for more information in the coming days.

Total Solar Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

Moon Facts

The Moon (or Luna) is the Earth’s only natural satellite and was formed 4.6 billion years ago around some 30–50 million years after the formation of the solar system. The Moon is in synchronous rotation with Earth meaning the same side is always facing the Earth. The first unmanned mission to the Moon was in 1959 by the Soviet Lunar Program with the first manned 

            landing being Apollo 11 in 1969.

The countdown has begun! Only 20 days remain before the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Vigo County Conservation Club, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10 and Oilvet University in Murphysboro, Illinois, will be on site in southern Illinois to webcast the event live. Stay tuned for more information regarding our webcast in the coming days.


Total Solar Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

The dark side of the moon is a myth.

In reality both sides of the Moon see the same amount of sunlight however only one face of the Moon is ever seen from Earth. This is because the Moon rotates around on its own axis in exactly the same time it takes to orbit the Earth, meaning the same side is always facing the Earth. The side facing away from Earth has only been seen by the human eye from spacecraft.

Do not look directly at an eclipse!!!

      Today is the fourth full day of the final lunar cycle before the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Vigo County Conservation Club, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10 and Oilvet University in Murphysboro, Illinois, will be on site in southern Illinois to webcast the event live. Stay tuned for more information regarding our webcast in the coming days.

In celebration of the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse, the Vigo County Conservation Club's Astronomer-in-Residence; James C. Wallace II (that's me), will be posting fun facts about solar eclipses, lunar eclipses, the Sun and the Moon as we count down the days till the shadow covers us all.

Total Solar Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

Partial Solar Eclipse

A partial solar eclipse occurs when Earth moves through the lunar penumbra (the lighter part of the Moon’s shadow) as the Moon moves between Earth and the Sun. The Moon does not block the entire solar disk, as seen from Earth. Depending on your location during a partial eclipse, you might see anything from a small sliver of the Sun being blotted out to a nearly total eclipse.

To view any eclipse safely, use approved filters or use an indirect method of viewing, such as projecting sunlight through a telescope and onto a white piece of paper or cardboard. NEVER look at the Sun

 through a telescope unless it has the appropriate filter. Blindness

  and severe eye damage can result due to improper

               observation  technique.

The countdown continues! Only 7 days remain before the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017.

The Vigo County Conservation Club and their Astronomer-in-Residence; James C. Wallace II, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10 and Chief Meteorologist Kevin Orpurt, will be on site in Carbondale, Illinois, site of maximum totality and duration, to webcast the event live for the enjoyment of those who are unable to travel to the path of totality.


Total Solar Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

The future is bright but long. The next total solar eclipse over the continental U.S. occurs April 8, 2024. It’s a good one, too. Depending on where you are (on the center line), the duration of totality lasts at least 3 minutes and 22 seconds on the east coast of Maine and stretches to 4 minutes and 27 seconds in southwestern Texas. After that eclipse, it’s a 20-year wait until August 23, 2044 (and, similar to the 1979 event, that one is visible only in Montana and North Dakota). Total solar eclipses follow in 2045 and 2078.


 The countdown continues! Only 10 days remain before the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Vigo County Conservation Club and their Astronomer-in-Residence; James C. Wallace II, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10 and Chief Meteorologist Kevin Orpurt, will be on site in Carbondale, Illinois, site of maximum totality and duration, to webcast the event live for the enjoyment of those who are unable to travel to the path of totality. Sponsored by: Sun Factory Tanning


 Total Solar Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

The shadow created on the Earth by the moon during a solar eclipse is broken down into three parts. These are the umbra, penumbra and antumbra. The Umbra is the darkest part of the shadow, where the moon is completely covering the sun. The antumbra is the area surrounding this, where the moon is in front of the Sun but isn’t covering it in its entirety so the shadow is not as dark. The penumbra is the outer area of the shadow where the moon is only covering a part of the Sun.

 

    Welcome To The Wabash Valley's

        "Eye On The Sky" Page

   Follow us with our coverage of the  

     Total Lunar Eclipse Of 2017!

Only 17 days remain before the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Vigo County Conservation Club, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10 and will be on site in Carbondale, Illinois to webcast the event live. Stay tuned for more information regarding our webcast in the coming days.


Total Solar Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

The Sun is an almost perfect sphere.
There is only a 10 kilometre (6.21371 miles) difference in its polar diameter compared to its equatorial diameter. Considering the vast expanse of the Sun, this means it is the closest thing to a perfect sphere that has been observed in nature.


Only 3 days until the Lunar Shadow overtakes us all! Spread the word. This is gonna be an awesome webcast. Greg Sloan, middle-school science teacher from Woodrow Wilson Middle School will be joining Chief Meteorologist Kevin Orpurt, Storm team Meteorologist Matt Brooks and Astronomer-in-Residence for the Vigo County Conservation Club; James C. Wallace II (that's me!) for the event of a lifetime.


We'll be taking questions via our Facebook page, doing great informational and educational demos, giving shout-outs to everyone who participates and perhaps even howling at the New Moon.


Total Solar Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

At its center the Sun reaches temperatures of 15 million °C.
The Sun is all the colours mixed together, this appears white to our eyes.
The Sun is mostly composed of hydrogen (70%) and Helium (28%).
The Sun is a main-sequence G2V star (or Yellow Dwarf).
The Sun is 4.6 billion years old.
The Sun is 109 times wider than the Earth and 330,000 times as massive.


   Today is the first full day of the final lunar cycle before the

 upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Vigo

 County Conservation Club, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10

 and Oilvet University in Murphysboro, Illinois, will be on site

  in southern Illinois to webcast the event live. Stay tuned for

  more information regarding our webcast in the coming 

 days.

In celebration of the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse, the Vigo County Conservation Club's Astronomer-in-Residence; James C. Wallace II (that's me), will be posting fun facts about solar eclipses, lunar eclipses, the Sun and the Moon as we count down the days till the shadow covers us all.

Total Solar Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

What is a Solar Eclipse?

A solar eclipse is a natural event that takes place on Earth when the Moon moves in its orbit between Earth and the Sun (this is also known as an occultation). It happens at New Moon, when the Sun and Moon are in conjunction with each other. If the Moon was only slightly closer to Earth, and orbited in the same plane and its orbit was circular, we would see eclipses each month. The lunar orbit is elliptical and tilted with respect to Earth’s orbit, so we can only see up to 5 eclipses per year. Depending on the geometry of the Sun, Moon and Earth, the Sun can be totally blocked, or it can be partially blocked.

During an eclipse, the Moon’s shadow (which is divided into two parts: the dark umbra and the lighter penumbra) moves across Earth’s surface. Safety note: do NOT ever look at the Sun directly during an eclipse unless it is during a total solar eclipse. The bright light of the Sun can damage your eyes
very quickly.

The countdown continues! Only 4 days remain before the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Vigo County Conservation Club and their Astronomer-in-Residence; James C. Wallace II, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10 and Chief Meteorologist Kevin Orpurt, will be on site in Carbondale, Illinois, site of maximum totality and duration, to webcast the event live for the enjoyment of those who are unable to travel to the path of totality.


Total Solar Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

Two spectacular events signal the boundaries of totality for seasoned eclipse observers, the appearances of the diamond ring effect and Baily’s beads. The beads are also an annular phenomenon.

Unlike Baily’s beads, the diamond ring, for all its spectacle, is not a true phenomenon of totality but a product of the final moments of the pre–totality partial phases and their post–totality resurgence.

Sir Edmund Halley is credited with making the first observations of Baily’s beads during the eclipse of 22 April 1715. They were also seen by Maclaurin from Edinburgh during the annular eclipse of 1 March 1737 and by Williams from Revolutionary War America on 27 October 1780 from just outside the path of totality. But it was Francis Baily’s widely–disseminated description of the phenomenon during the annular eclipse of 15 May 1836 that led to their bearing his name thereafter.

Shortly before second contact of a total eclipse, the opposing horns of the slender crescent sun begin to converge on one another. At the same time, the tenuous solar atmosphere becomes visible against the darkening sky, shining out around the edge of the moon where the sun has already been covered. The combination of this “ring” of light and the single brilliant “diamond” of sunlight where the horns are converging creates a most striking appearance, the diamond ring.



The countdown continues! Only 12 days remain before the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Vigo County Conservation Club and their Astronomer-in-Residence; James C. Wallace II, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10 and Chief Meteorologist Kevin Orpurt, will be on site in Carbondale, Illinois, site of maximum totality and duration, to webcast the event live for the enjoyment of those who are unable to travel to the path of totality.

In order to view this webcast, check out the following link on the morning of August 21, then sit back, relax and enjoy the show of a lifetime.

http://www.wthitv.com/solar-eclipse (copy and paste to your browser)

IMPORTANT NOTE: The brief few minutes of totality is the only time it is safe to look directly at the Sun with no eye protection. If you are wearing special eclipse glasses, take them off when the Moon completely covers the Sun. But be sure to put them back on if you continue looking at the sun as soon as totality is finished.

When the Moon completely covers the Sun, it is known as totality. It will become dark as night during totality. The stars will pop out and you will see two very bright points of light near the Sun. They are really the planets Venus and Mercury. Most people never get to see Mercury because it is usually so close to the Sun that it is blotted out by the Sun’s glare.

Mars and Jupiter will make an appearance. Those two planets will seem to be near the Sun, when in reality they will be much farther away on the far opposite sides of their orbits. In total, 4 of the 5 planets that don’t require a telescope can be seen during the eclipse.

Sirius, the Dog Star, will show itself as the very bright star to the southwest of the Sun. In fact Sirius is the second brightest star in our sky after the Sun.

   Click  For Forecast

  SLIDESHOW


The countdown continues! Only 9 days remain before the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Vigo County Conservation Club and their Astronomer-in-Residence; James C. Wallace II, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10 and Chief Meteorologist Kevin Orpurt, will be on site in Carbondale, Illinois, site of maximum totality and duration, to webcast the event live for the enjoyment of those who are unable to travel to the path of totality.Total Solar


Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

A solar eclipse happens at New Moon. The Moon has to be between the Sun and Earth for a solar eclipse to occur. The only lunar phase when that happens is New Moon.

Solar eclipses don’t happen at every New Moon. The reason is that the Moon’s orbit tilts 5° to Earth’s orbit around the Sun. Astronomers call the two intersections of these paths nodes. Eclipses only occur when the Sun lies at one node and the Moon is at its New (for solar eclipses) or Full (for lunar eclipses) phase. During most (lunar) months, the Sun lies either above or below one of the nodes, and no eclipse happens.

The countdown has begun! Only 19 days remain before the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Vigo County Conservation Club, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10 and Oilvet University in Murphysboro, Illinois, will be on site in southern Illinois to webcast the event live. Stay tuned for more information regarding our webcast in the coming days.


Total Solar Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

The Sun

One million Earths could fit inside the Sun.
If a hollow Sun was filled up with spherical Earths then around 960,000 would fit inside. On the other hand if these Earths were squished inside with no wasted space then around 1,300,000 would fit inside. The Sun’s surface area is 11,990 times that of the Earth’s.

  The countdown has begun! Only 23 days remain before the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Vigo County Conservation Club, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10 and Oilvet University in Murphysboro, Illinois, will be on site in southern Illinois to webcast the event live. Stay tuned for more information regarding our webcast in the coming days.

Total Solar Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

The Sun’s mass is 1,989,100,000,000,000,000,000 billion kg (4,384,949,400,000,000,000,000,000 billion pounds) or 333,060 Earths. This is 99.86% of the total mass of our Solar System, about three quarters of this mass is hydrogen and the rest is mostly helium.

That means that the Sun's mass is roughly 99.86% of the entire mass of our solar system, which includes the planet Pluto (Yes! Pluto will always remain

     a planet as far as I'm concerned)

The countdown has begun! Only 15 days remain before the upcoming Total Solar Eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Vigo County Conservation Club, in conjunction with WTHI-TV10 and will be on site in Carbondale, Illinois to webcast the event live. Stay tuned for more information regarding our webcast in the coming days.

Total Solar Eclipse 2017 Fun Facts

The most famous eclipse of ancient times ended a five-year war between the Lydians and the Medes. These two Middle Eastern armies were locked in battle when "the day was turned into night." The sight of this total solar eclipse (the date is fixed as May 28, 585 B.C.) was startling enough to cause both nations to stop fighting at once. They agreed to a peace treaty and cemented the bond with a double marriage. The eclipse was predicted by Thales, the celebrated Greek astronomer and philosopher, but the prediction was probably not known to the warring nations.