Eye safety a big concern during the solar eclipse

5 months 3 weeks 3 days ago Wednesday, July 26 2017 Jul 26, 2017 Wednesday, July 26, 2017 4:53:00 PM CDT July 26, 2017 in Eclipse Science
By: Kenton Gewecke, KOMU 8 Chief Meteorologist
loading

COLUMBIA - The views you will experience during the total solar eclipse might take your breath away, but in order to see the solar corona safely you must have proper eye protection. If you don’t wear approved solar eyewear, Dr. Frederick Fraunfelder, the Director of Ophthalmology at MU Health, said you could do serious damage to your eyes.

“The sun burns the very important layer of the retina called the macula," explained Fraunfelder. "Damaging the cones in your macula can permanently damage your vision by burning them with direct light from the sun."

Fraunfelder says eclipse glasses have a solar film that will block out many light waves regular sunglasses will not. “They will block out UVA, UVB, infrared light, and also intense visual light."

It’s important to block this light out so you can safely look directly into the sun for the partial eclipse before and after totality.

During totality, when the sun’s light is completely blocked out for up to 2:40 in mid-Missouri, you will need to take the glasses off in order to see the spectacle that is night during the day. You will see stars, a few planets and the solar corona, the sun's atmosphere. Read our Deep Dive into the eclipse for the answers to common questions about this event.

However, be sure you don’t take the glasses off too soon. If you do, you may miss out on totality altogether. Your eyes might not be able to adjust to the darkness if you catch a glimpse of the sun’s light prior to totality.

“We call that an after image,” says Fraunfelder, “and that is neural signals to your brain still firing after the lights already stimulated the rods and the cones and after images is a good way to explain you sorta see purple or red after you've stared into a bright light."

Be sure your glasses are approved and safe! NASA released a statement saying glasses are being passed around that do not meet adequate safety guidelines. Glasses must have "ISO 12312-2" printed on them. Only four companies have been approved as manufacturing safe solar eclipse glasses: American Paper Optics, Rainbow Symphony, Thousand Oaks Optical, and TSE 17. Check your glasses to be sure you're protected.

Using a magnifying system such as binoculars? You must have a solar filter on the front of the binoculars or telescope. If you look through non-filtered magnification of the Sun's light through solar glasses positioned over your eyes there will be considerable damage to your eyes. Again, the sun's light and energy is being magnified and solar glasses are not made to withstand that.

You can read more about safe solar eclipse viewing on NASA’s website.

Pick up your free KOMU 8 Show Me Eclipse glasses at Dollar General Stores in Columbia, Jefferson City, Fulton and Mexico while supplies last. The Mizzou Store is also selling eclipse glasses for $1.50 with some proceeds going back to the Astronomy Department.

If you’re wondering what the night sky may look like in the early afternoon on August 21st during totality, you can see the image above.

You can read all our Show Me Eclipse coverage, continuously updating with new content, at KOMU.com/eclipse.

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA – Columbia Public Schools are closed Tuesday and one local business is hoping they will be able to capitalize... More >>
3 days ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 7:44:00 PM CST January 15, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - People of all backgrounds filled the seats in the bottom of SSM Health St. Mary's Hospital to... More >>
3 days ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 4:46:00 PM CST January 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia's NAACP chapter hosted their annual 24th Martin Luther King, Jr. Day memorial program. The theme for... More >>
3 days ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 4:08:00 PM CST January 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia Police say a man robbed the Best Buy on Worley Street and then held a customer and... More >>
3 days ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 1:10:16 PM CST January 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Dozens of drivers have slid off the road in central Missouri and the highway patrol says many of... More >>
3 days ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 1:02:00 PM CST January 15, 2018 in News
SEDALIA (AP) — Sedalia police have identified person(s) of interest and are following leads in the investigation of Heather... More >>
3 days ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 11:41:00 AM CST January 15, 2018 in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - Columbia Police said Tuesday the suspects in a robbery at Hyvee on Nifong Boulevard also stole items from... More >>
3 days ago Monday, January 15 2018 Jan 15, 2018 Monday, January 15, 2018 11:18:00 AM CST January 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The NAACP will sponsor a walk in remembrance of Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday on Monday. The... More >>
4 days ago Sunday, January 14 2018 Jan 14, 2018 Sunday, January 14, 2018 9:30:00 PM CST January 14, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - People from all around the world come together to celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr Day. Not... More >>
4 days ago Sunday, January 14 2018 Jan 14, 2018 Sunday, January 14, 2018 9:00:00 PM CST January 14, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – Over 100 people gathered for an event entitled “Critical Conversations in Troubled Times” at Second Missionary Baptist Church... More >>
4 days ago Sunday, January 14 2018 Jan 14, 2018 Sunday, January 14, 2018 8:41:00 PM CST January 14, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia Public Works is preparing for overnight snow fall Monday with an 8-person plow crew.... More >>
4 days ago Sunday, January 14 2018 Jan 14, 2018 Sunday, January 14, 2018 7:01:00 PM CST January 14, 2018 in Top Stories
ASHLAND - The city of Ashland has grown from a small town of just 429 people to a bustling city... More >>
4 days ago Sunday, January 14 2018 Jan 14, 2018 Sunday, January 14, 2018 4:24:00 PM CST January 14, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - More than 500 future brides filled the Holiday Inn Executive Center on Sunday to attend the Super Wedding... More >>
4 days ago Sunday, January 14 2018 Jan 14, 2018 Sunday, January 14, 2018 1:38:00 PM CST January 14, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – The 13 th Circuit Court will be adding a Mental Health Track to the Drug Court in January.... More >>
4 days ago Sunday, January 14 2018 Jan 14, 2018 Sunday, January 14, 2018 1:24:00 PM CST January 14, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The old location of LifeRock church cost too much, and the future location isn't yet finished, so the... More >>
4 days ago Sunday, January 14 2018 Jan 14, 2018 Sunday, January 14, 2018 12:52:00 PM CST January 14, 2018 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) - One Missouri county has hired a private firm to perform autopsies while it continues to search for... More >>
4 days ago Sunday, January 14 2018 Jan 14, 2018 Sunday, January 14, 2018 12:52:00 PM CST January 14, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - A man is in custody for shooting a Jefferson City resident on Saturday night. 20-year-old Marco... More >>
4 days ago Sunday, January 14 2018 Jan 14, 2018 Sunday, January 14, 2018 12:31:00 PM CST January 14, 2018 in Continuous News
LEBANON (AP) — A southern Missouri teacher has been arrested and charged with felony sexual contact with a student. ... More >>
4 days ago Sunday, January 14 2018 Jan 14, 2018 Sunday, January 14, 2018 11:48:41 AM CST January 14, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 31°
6am 26°
7am 25°
8am 28°
9am 33°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

5:00a
KOMU 8 News Today
6:00a
KOMU 8 News Today
7:00a
Today
5:00a
Paid Program
5:30a
Paid Program
6:00a
Page Six TV

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
Blindspot
8:00p
Taken
9:00p
Dateline NBC
7:00p
Black Lightning
8:00p
Penn & Teller: Fool Us
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld