Library News

Solar eclipse

by Library Staff | August 15, 2017 at 08:08 PM

Image of a partial solar eclipseLast updated August 18, 12:10 p.m.


Solar glasses

Unfortunately, the library no longer has eclipse glasses to give away.  Our limited supply went very fast!   

In the event that you were able to find glasses, please be advised that NASA advises all users to refer to the AAS Reputable Vendors of Solar Filters & Viewers page for a list of manufacturers and authorized dealers of eclipse glasses verified to be compliant with the ISO 12312-2 international safety standard.  

Read more about viewing the eclipse safely:


Alternatives ways to enjoy the eclipse

At this point it may be difficult to find solar glasses for sale in time for the August 21 eclipse, but NASA, the American Astronomical Society (AAS), and the National Science Teachers Association, all suggest other fun and safe ways to view the eclipse, including indirectly through easy-to-make pinhole projectors:


Live streaming sites

If you are not able to get outside to view the eclipse, or if it turns out to be a cloudy day, or you want the view from the "path of totality," you can check out NASA's live stream here:  For other streaming sites see:  The Best Places to View the August 2017 Solar Eclipse Online, compiled by Gizmo's Freeware.



In Acton, this will be a partial eclipse, with 63.38% coverage of the sun.

  • Duration:  2 hours, 31 minutes, 19 seconds
  • Partial eclipse begins August 21 at 1:27:34 p.m.
  • Maximum coverage at 2:46:01 p.m.
  • Eclipse ends at 3:58:53 p.m.


More information

For more information on the August 21 solar eclipse see:



...and here are a few books on the science and cultural history of eclipses:

Solar eclipse Science Equipment Information sources