PETER PAYACK, Conceptual Anarchist, Science Fiction Poet, Sky Artist, Inventor of The Stonehenge Watch

Observing Solar Eclipses-1 Resources (Pasachoff American Journal of Physics, June '17)

Observing Solar Eclipses-1 Resources (Pasachoff American Journal of Physics, June '17)
Overall Review of Payack's Work
The Stonehenge Watch
Selected poems from No Free Will In Tomatoes
Review of Payack's Rhysling Award Winning Poem
Micro Poems
Spankin New Poems!
Sex Tip For Poets!
Scavenger Hunt For Truth
Science Fiction Poems
Excert from Dark Comic Novel on Suicide
Community Involvement
Contact Info


Jay M. Pasachoff, Williams College and Caltech

as of January 22, 2017

see: for my IAU Working Group on Eclipses website with useful links

see: for images/information about my 64 previous eclipses

see: for my published books



small guides (inexpensive or free):


Michael Zeiler, See the Great American Eclipse of August 21, 2017 (incl. 2 partial-eclipse glasses), $9.99

Available as an eBook at


Pat & Fred Espenak, Get Eclipsed: The Complete Guide to the American Eclipse (incl. a pair of partial-eclipse glasses), $6.00


Fraknoi, Andrew, & Dennis Schatz, Guide to the 2017 Eclipse (from the National Science Teachers Association):  (8-page PDF guide to eclipse information, circumstances, and viewing.)



detailed maps and information:


See links at Jay Pasachoff's website for the Working Group on Solar Eclipses of the International Astronomical Union:


American Astronomical Society site:

Twitter handle, @AAS_Eclipse ( and a Facebook page (


Michael Zeiler's website:

a major website, also including an app


Fred Espenak and Jay Anderson, Eclipse Bulletin: Total Solar Eclipse, 2017 August 21; b/w:, b/w: $19.99; color: $34.99


Fred Espenak, Road Atlas for the Total Solar Eclipse of 2017,; b/w: $14.99; color: $19.99


Fred Espenak's website (superseding the "NASA Eclipse Website"):


Xavier Jubier's maps:


For the February 26, 2017, annular eclipse in Argentina and Chile:


For the August 21, 2017, total eclipse in the United States:

or, shorter:

with a version (satellite background and an ad) at


Xavier Jubier's eclipse website:


Jay Anderson's website with weather and climate discussions and statistics:


Jay Pasachoff's website about past and current eclipses:


Andy Fraknoi's site with resources:


NASA site:


Dan McGlaun site:


Bill Kramer site:



new eclipse books that include the spirit of observing an eclipse:


David Baron, American Eclipse: A Nation’s Epic Race to Catch the Shadow of the Moon and Win the Glory of the World. New York: Liveright, in preparation for June 6, 2017, publication, W. W. Norton/Liveright;  $27.95. Pages: 384.


Tyler Nordgren, Sun Moon Earth: The History of Solar Eclipses from Omens of Doom to Einstein and Exoplanets, Perseus Books

listed at http://tylernordgren.com4

Publication date was September 3rd, 2016, 26.99, 264 pages

reviewed: Aug. 21, 2017: The Great American Eclipse


Anthony Aveni, In the Shadow of the Moon: The Science, Magic, and Mystery of Solar Eclipses

publication date: April 25, 2017. 320 pages, 32 b/w illus.
ISBN: 9780300223194. Hardcover: $28.00


Frank Close, Eclipse: Journeys to the Dark Side of the Moon (to be published 19 January 2017 in the UK and April 2017 in the US, Oxford University Press), 978-0-19-879549-0, 208 pp with 8 color plates, £12.99.


See JMP's reviews: ---- 2016, books review of Sun Moon Earth: The History of Solar Eclipses from Omens of Doom to Einstein and Exoplanets by Tyler Nordgren; In the Shadow of the Moon: The Science, Magic, and Mystery of Solar Eclipses by Anthony Aveni; and American Eclipse: A Nation’s Epic Race to Catch the Shadow of the Moon and Win the Glory of the World by David Baron, PBK Key Reporter.


JMP reviews of Aveni/Baron/Close: due in Nature to be printed in June 2017


John Dvorak, Mask of the Sun: The Science, History and Forgotten Lore of Eclipses (Pegasus Books, 2017). 978-1681773308




other new eclipse books for 2017


Mark Littmann and Fred Espenak, Totality: The Great American Eclipses of 2017 and 2024, in press for January 2017 publication, Oxford University Press


Michael Bakich, Your Guide to the 2017 Total Solar Eclipse, Springer International Publishing, 2016, ISBN 978-3-319-27630-4, 395 pages. $24.99 eBook; $34.99 softcover:

comments from Michael Zeiler:  My take is that this is an excellent guide for first-time eclipse observers. There is quite a bit of information packed into 395 pages and there is strong content on frequently asked questions, cool facts, proper equipment for viewing the eclipse, community planning, how to observe the eclipse, and more.

 Michael Bakich's podcast at


Bill Kramer, Eclipse Nuts.

Eclipse cartoons from the proprietor of

Order from, $20 (2016)



older eclipse books that include the spirit of observing an eclipse:


Kate Russo, The total solar eclipse of 2012 in Far North Queensland. (FC Productions, 2013).   see


Kate Russo, Total Addiction: The Life of an Eclipse Chaser (Springer, 2012)


Mike Reynolds and Richard A. Sweetsir, Observe Eclipses! (1995), order from him directly: or the Astronomical League:



Levy, David H., Guide to Eclipses, Transits and Occultations, Cambridge University Press (2010), 9780521165518. https://



magazine articles


Jay M. Pasachoff, "The Solar Corona," Scientific American, July 2017 (in preparation), new version of an article by the same title:

1973, "The Solar Corona," Scientific American  229, #4 (October), 68-79; included in New Frontiers in Astronomy, O. Gingerich, ed., W. H. Freeman & Co., 1975.



community eclipse planning:


Kate Russo, White Paper: Community Eclipse Planning



Pasachoff guide with updated eclipse coverage:


Jay Pasachoff, Peterson Field Guide to the Stars and Planets, July 2016 printing; list $19.00 ($12.50 at amazon prime); shows "Pluto Flyby Included" on the cover


Jay Pasachoff, Peterson First Guide to Astronomy, 3rd printing (2016; © 2014), $7.95


eclipse posters in retro style:


popular books about solar science:


Leon Golub and Jay M. Pasachoff, Nearest Star: The Exciting Science of Our Sun (Cambridge U. Press, 2014), 2nd ed.; with Chapter 5 about eclipses, pp. 128-168.


Jay M. Pasachoff, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to the Sun, Alpha, New York, 2003. A personal, light- hearted survey, including anecdotes. The book is available as a free download, astronomy/sun.


Leon Golub and Jay M. Pasachoff, The Sun, in press for the Science Museum, London (Reaktion Books, 2017;, for publication in June 2017).

Distributed in the U.S. by University of Chicago Press:


web:,, youtube

Jay Pasachoff, 2016, for March 6, 2016:



Jay Pasachoff, 2016, for August 21, 2016:





Jay Pasachoff, 2015, Academic Minute about eclipses of 2015 and 2017.


Doug Duncan (Fiske Planetarium, U Colorado):


books on historic eclipse observations:


Stella Cottam and Wayne Orchiston, Eclipses, Transits, and Comets of the Nineteenth Century: How America's Perception of the Skies Changed (Springer, 2016), eBook for $99.

Book review by Jay Pasachoff: Journal of Astronomical History and Heritage, 18, #1, March/April, 112.


Alex Pang, Empire and the Sun: Victorian Solar Eclipse Expeditions (Stanford University Press, 2002), $25.95.


David Baron, American Eclipse: Thomas Edison and the Celestial Event that Illuminated a Nation, in preparation for June 2017 publication, W. W. Norton


Pierre Guillemier and Serge Koutchmy, Total Eclipses: Science, Observations, Myths, and egends (1999).


Pierre Léna, Racing the Moon's Shadow with Concorde 001 (Springer, 2015), translation by Stephen Lyle of Concorde 001 et l’ombre de la lune (Cham, Switzerland).


historic eclipse books:


Rebecca R. Joslin,  Chasing Eclipses: the Total Solar Eclipses of 1905, 1914, 1925 (1929)


Mabel Loomis Todd, Total Eclipses of the Sun (1894)


Halley eclipse map (1715/1724)


Pasachoff, Jay M., 1999, "Halley and his maps of the total eclipses of 1715 and 1724," Astronomy & Geophysics (Royal Astronomical Society) 40, 2.18-2.21, April.


Pasachoff, Jay M., 1999, "Halley as an eclipse pioneer: his maps and observations of the total solar eclipses of 1715 and 1724," Journal of Astronomical History and Heritage 2(1), 39-54, June.


Pasachoff, Jay M., 1999, "Halley et ses cartes d'éclipses totales de 1715 et 1724," Ciel et Terre 115, mars-avril, 51-56.


popular book about eclipses:


Mark Littmann, Fred Espenak, and Ken Willcox, Totality: Eclipses of the Sun, 3rd ed., (Oxford University Press, 2008; updated 2009)


other eclipse books


John Westfall and William Sheehan, Celestial Shadows: Eclipses, Transits, and Occultations (Springer, 2015)


Marc Nussbaum, Total Solar Eclipse 2017: Your Guide to the Next US Eclipse, (2015; $19.99 at; ISBN 9780692513729)


Martin Mobberley, Total Solar Eclipses and How to Observe Them (Astronomers' Observing Guides), (Springer, 2007)


Jay M. Pasachoff and Michael Covington, The Cambridge Eclipse Photography Guide (Cambridge University Press, 1993).


Philip S. Harrington, Eclipse!: The What, Where, When, Why, and How Guide to Watching Solar and Lunar Eclipses (John Wiley, 1997).


Jack B. Zirker, Total Eclipses of the Sun (republished by Princeton University Press; paperback 2014 and hardback 2016; 1981, 1991, 1995).


Wolfgang Held, The Solar Eclipse 2017



In French: Institut de Mécanique Céleste et de Calcul des Éphémérides, Observatoire de Paris, Le manuel des éclipses (EDP Sciences), ISBN 2-86883-810-3, © 2005.


Books for educators


Schatz, Dennis, and Andrew Fraknoi, Solar Science: Exploring Sunspots, Seasons, Eclipses and More, 2016, National Science Teachers Association Press. (A book of 45 hands-on activities for in or out of the classroom use by teachers, museum and nature center educators, librarians, etc. Includes a booklet on the 2017 eclipse and eclipse glasses.)


The Universe in the Classroom is available on the Astronomical Society of the Pacific's website:
Fall 2016: Getting Ready for the All American Eclipse: An NGSS Storyline Approach to Classroom Instruction, by Brian Kruse (Astronomical Society of the Pacific):


children's books and magazines:


Patricia Totten Espenak, Total Eclipse or Bust!: A Family Road Trip (, 2016); $14.99


Ruth A. Sonneborn, Someone Is Eating the Sun (Random House Pictureback, 1974);


Naomi Pasachoff, ed., January 2017 issue of Dig Into History (Cricket Publishing; target: ages 9-14; vol. 19, no. 1), $4.95; $3.95 for 2-99 copies; $2.95 for 100 or more copies. Theme: What's Up with Eclipses?, 1-800-821-0115


Andrew Fraknoi & Dennis Schatz, When The Sun Goes Dark (National Science Teachers Association Press, 2016). A guide to eclipses for kids ages 9 to 14.


Wendy Mass, Every Soul A Star (Little Brown, 2009).  Middle-school novel.


Jay M. Pasachoff, "When the Moon Hides the Sun," Odyssey, May/June, 2011, 36-39.


Nancy Coffelt, The Big Eclipse (2016): has: "The Big Eclipse, by acclaimed children's illustrator and author Nancy Coffelt, introduces a cast of charming animal characters as they follow the path of the 2017 eclipse across America, capturing their sense of wonder and excitement. Readers will learn what causes eclipses, about strange eclipse effects, eclipse myths and even learn what hippos do when day turns to night. The book tells why it's important to protect your eyes when viewing the sun, especially during an eclipse--and how to do so safely. Each book comes with a safe solar eclipse viewer."

  See also The Big Eclipse Activity Book ("for kids 5-11").  Contact Elaine Cuyler, "Chief Eclipse Officer" of Orbit Oregon, at

For orders of 10 or more, the book is $6.50 instead of $12.95 for fewer copies each (and each book includes a viewer); the activity book is $2.50 instead of $4.95, and the book + activity book is $7.50 instead of $14.95, with viewers or glasses at 75c for >50.

  I have copies of both the book and the activity book and they look excellent (and accurate) to me.


Hergé: TinTin (1949): Prisoners of the Sun (though perhaps this Belgian character is really for grownups)


Girl-Scout guides

in progress from Lou Mayo of NASA: <>

with a book being written by his daughter


video about the sun, including eclipses:

Jay Pasachoff, Colors and Motions of the Sun (target: grades 9 to 12) (1st ed.: 2007; 2nd ed.: 2013), duration about 8 minutes


Colors of the Sun (target: middle school; preceded the Williams College higher-level version)


Aram Friedman, the 2009 eclipse wide-angle video


videos about eclipses:


Solar Eclipse 1973 June 30 Mauritania--Part 1 of 2


Solar Eclipse 1973 June 30 Mauritania--Part 2 of 2



Solar Eclipse 1973 June 30 Kenya--Part 1 of 2


Solar Eclipse 1973 June 30 Kenya--Part 2 of 2




Solar Eclipse Movie Archive Channel


2009 National Geographic: YAP Films


Solar Eclipse 2009 July 22 China--Storm Worlds




2010 National Geographic Documentary: 1080i Films


Solar Eclipse 2010 July 11 Easter Island--Part 1 of 5


Solar Eclipse 2010 July 11 Easter Island--Part 2 of 5


Solar Eclipse 2010 July 11 Easter Island--Part 3 of 5


Solar Eclipse 2010 July 11 Easter Island--Part 4 of 5


Solar Eclipse 2010 July 11 Easter Island--Part 5 of 5




National Geographic 1973 film


Part 1:


Part 2:



Additional b-roll:



American Institute of Physics Resource Letter:

Jay M. Pasachoff, 2010, "Resource Letter SP-1 on Solar Physics," American Journal of Physics, 78, September, 890-901.


Eclipse-related articles:

Jay M. Pasachoff, 1973, "The Solar Corona," Scientific American  229, #4 (October), pp. 68-79; included in New Frontiers in Astronomy, O. Gingerich, ed., W. H. Freeman & Co., 1975.

with a new Scientific Article in preparation for July 2017 publication.


Bhola N. Dwivedi and Kenneth J. H. Phillips, "The Paradox of the Sun's Hot Corona," Scientific American 284, #6 (June), 2002, pp. 38-47


U.S. Naval Observatory resources, including maps and calculators:

See also: 2024 April 8 Total Solar Eclipse

In conjunction with Her Majesty's Nautical Almanac Office, USNO also has a general eclipse portal:


NASA eclipse site, with publications

superseaded, at the retirement of Fred Espenak, by


other lists of eclipse-related books: from Dan McGlaun


eye safety brochure:


providers of partial-eclipse glasses:

for safety, the glasses should cite International Standards Org: ISO 12312-2

Thousand Oaks Optical,

Rainbow Symphony,

American Paper Optics,,

Europe: for filters from American Paper Optics


simple spectroscopes for classes

Sets of 25 ready-to-assemble solar spectroscopes, along with study guides and classroom resources designed to match National Science Standards (US) for various grade levels, are available from Astronomers Without Borders. Created by the outreach office of the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) with a grant from NASA, these spectroscopes are now available worldwide.


American Association of Physics Teachers meeting, Atlanta

· Jay Pasachoff, Richtmyer Memorial Lecture Award, to be scheduled

· Workshop, Toby Dittrich,

  • Sun, Feb 19, 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.




Pasachoff, Jay M., 2015, Academic Minute about eclipses of 2015 and 2017.


American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) meeting, Atlanta, GA

February 19, 2017, 9:00-noon: workshop led by Toby Dittrich aided by Jay Pasachoff


February 19, 2017, afternoon: Jay Pasachoff is given the Richtmyer Memorial Lecture Award and gives the lecture about "Observing the Great American Eclipse of August 21, 2017"


Historical Eclipses and the Earth's Rotation

F. Richard Stephenson, Historical Eclipses and Earth's Rotation (Cambridge U. Press, hardbound 1997, reprinted paperbound 2008)

with a 2003 update:

F. R. Stephenson, "Historical Eclipses and Earth's Rotation,"


2016 update: “Earth’s spin is slowing at a rate of 1.8 milliseconds per century," LA Times, December 7, 2016, by Deborah Newborn; accessed from the Chicago Tribune,


Clemency Montelle, Chasing Shadows: Mathematics, Astronomy, and the Early History of Eclipse Reckoning (The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2011).

 Opening quotation: "Well, after this, said Socrates, when I was worn out with my physical investigations, it occurred tome that I must guard against the same sort of risk which people run when they watch and study an eclipse of the sun; they really do sometimes injure their eyes, unless they study its reflection in water or some other medium.  I conceived of something like this happening to m yself, and I was afraid that by observing objects with y eyes and trying to comprehend them with each of my other senses I might blind my soul altogether.  So I decided that I must have recourse to theories, and use them in trying to discover the truth about things.

 Plato, Phaeda 99b-c; ed. Hamilton


World outreach program on solar astronomy observing (not eclipse related)

"Charlie Bates Solar Astronomy Project"


Frequently asked questions: FAQ's, and general intro

from Dr. Doug Duncan, Fiske Planetarium, U. Colorado


Press conference

JMP at the American Physical Society, January 30, 2017:



Listing with the PowerPoints and resources: (scroll down to find the video)

This is a webinar organized by NISENet (the National Informal STEM Education Network) to help informal educators and anyone else working with groups to get ready for and to do public outreach for the 2017 solar eclipse.  Speakers are Ali Jackson, Andrew Fraknoi and Dennis Schatz.


Free planetarium show

Eclipse: Countdown to Totalty

contact: Beau Hartweg, Texas Christian University,

created with Microsoft's Worldwide Telescope





Eclipse prediction:

Stonehenge Watch, with a scale model of Stonehenge inside this plastic pocket watch, "guaranteed to tell time for 5000 years."  Stonehenge was [probably] used to predict eclipses, too. or  Fifth Millennial Addiversary Edition, 2017.  Order from Sharpe Products (973) 335-8525 or (800)-Watch-55. $24.99.

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