How to Safely View the Annular Solar Eclipse on October 14, 2023
Looking for how to safely view the October 14, 2023 Annular Solar Eclipse? You've come to the right spot!
Where Will The Eclipse Be Visible?
The Saturday, Oct. 14, 2023, an Annular Solar Eclipse will cross North, Central, and South America. It will be visible in parts of the United States, Mexico, and many countries in South and Central America. The whole US will be under at least a partial solar eclipse, with the full annular (Ring of Fire) visible in a band stretching from Oregon through Nevada, Utah, New Mexico, and Texas, as well as touching some neighboring states.
Click the Map image for the interactive Google Map.
How is an Annular Solar Eclipse Different from a Total Solar Eclipse?
A Total Solar Eclipse occurs when the Moon fully blocks out the Sun. An Annular Solar Eclipse occurs when the moon is further away in it's orbit, and so appears smaller, and does not completely block out the sun. This leaves a Ring of Fire visible around the Lunar limb. Because an Annular Solar Eclipse does not fully block out the sun, eye protection is needed during all phases of an annular solar eclipse.
Solar Eclipse Glasses
Solar Eclipse Glasses are the easiest and safe way to directly view all phases of the Annular Eclipse. Unlike a Total Solar Eclipse (Which we will see in April 2024) in an Annular solar eclipse, the Moon never fully blocks out the sun. This means you need safe solar eclipse glasses for all phases of the eclipse.
Look for ISO and CE Certification Marks
To make sure you are buying safe Eclipse Glasses, or to verify the glasses you already have meet safety standards, look for the ISO and CE certification marks.
All of the eclipse glasses and filters sold by Mile High Astronomy meet these ISO or CE safety standards.
If you have glasses that do not show these standard markings, don't use them. Tear them up and throw them away, and purchase certified eclipse glasses.
Not sure about your eclipse glasses? Check the American Astronomical Society's Reputable Vendors list, which includes a list of verified manufacturers and retailers.
We carry only eclipse glasses that are ISO and CE certified, and Made in the USA! We offer bulk discounts on eclipse glasses. For orders larger than 2,500 units, we can offer additional discounts for schools and non-profit organizations. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for inquiries and with desired quantities!
Check Your Eclipse Glasses Before Use
Before putting on your eclipse glasses, check the lenses for any scratches or pinholes. If you find any damage, THROW THEM AWAY! Eclipse glasses are inexpensive - buy a new pair. We visually inspect each pair of eclipse glasses we sell to make sure they don't show any blemishes or damage before we ship them to you.
Alternatives to Eclipse Glasses
Welder's Glass labeled #14 is also safe to use. Do not use welder's glass that has a number less than 14, or any welding shade where you do not know the number. #14 is not commonly used for most welding because it is so dark, but that's what you need for looking at the sun!
If you find yourself out on eclipse day without eclipse glasses or #14 welder's glass, you can still enjoy the eclipse through indirect viewing methods. (NEVER try to look at the sun without certified eclipse glasses or welders glass.)
A pinhole viewer is an option that can be constructed out of just two pieces of card stock or paperboard. For a pinhole viewer, take one sheet of card stock and poke a thumbtack through the center of it to make a pinhole. Orient the pinhole card so the sun shines through the pinhole, and onto your second piece of card stock. You'll see a projected image of the sun. Move the cards further away from each other for a larger image, or closer together for a smaller but higher contrast image.
Solar Filters and Camera Filters
If this is your first solar eclipse, and you plan to bring a telescope or camera, make sure you have a safe and secure solar filter! Mile High Astronomy offers solar filters for cameras to large telescopes available here.
Solar Filter Safety
If you would like to observe the eclipse with a telescope, binoculars, or a camera, don’t get sucked into money saving “tricks” to block the light – spend a little bit of money on certified solar filters to keep you and your equipment safe! Most solar filters for telescopes or binoculars are designed to be placed over the front objective – the end pointed at what you are viewing - not at the eyepiece.
In years past, some cheap telescopes came with a solar filter that could be threaded onto the eyepiece. Never use these eyepiece solar filters! Heat buildup can cause them to crack, leading to potential permanent eye damage. Throw them in the trash! If you happen to be looking through the eyepiece when a filter like that fails, severe eye damage could occur. The only type of safe solar filter that can be used on the eyepiece end of a telescope (and then only on refractor telescopes) is known as a Herschel wedge, which start at around $400. Don’t worry though – high quality and safe white light solar filters can be had for just $20 - $50.