How to view the “Ring of Fire” eclipse

Published: Oct. 13, 2023 at 3:14 PM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (13 News) - Saturday morning, you’ll be able to see a ring of fire in the sky. Between around 8:15 and 10:00 AM, an annular eclipse will be visible over Arizona.

But you don’t just need to plan your schedule - you need to plan for safety.

An annual eclipse doesn’t completely cover the sun, because it happens when the moon is farthest from Earth. That means some of the sun will be visible, and it is never safe to look directly at it without the right eye protection. It’s that circle of sun behind the moon that creates the blazing “ring of fire” effect. Looking directly at it could cause permanent damage. Even dark sunglasses are not enough.

Eclipse glasses must be certified by the American Astronomical Society.

”Typically, they’re going to have some small print on them, and they need to make sure they meet the transition requirements of ISO-12312-2 and that’s super important because it makes sure that the filter the glasses are using are going to block enough of the sun to safely view the eclipse,” said Shiloe Fontes with Flandrau Science Center and Planetarium at University of Arizona.

Flandrau has glasses available for their viewing event in the morning, but you can also use an indirect method of viewing the eclipse with something as simple as an index card with a hole punched through it. Stand with your back to the sun - and you can safely project an image of the eclipse onto the ground or another surface. Track the eclipse timing on NASA’s map.

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