Moment of Science: Solar Eclipse Viewing Device

For the first time in 99 years America will experience a total solar eclipse from coast to coast! What is a solar eclipse? Watch this short video to find out and then build your own eclipse device to safely watch this rare solar event!

It’s time to get crafty!

Building your eclipse viewer:

  1. Grab a box – any box will do. The longer the box, the larger the image of the sun. If using a box with seams, seal up the box with opaque tape to make the inside dark.
  2.  Cut or poke eye and sun holes.
  3. Tape aluminum foil over sun hole.
  4. Poke hole in foil with a pin.
  5. Tape box shut to block light leaks.

To use your eclipse viewer:

  1. Stand with the sun behind you.
  2. Point the pinhole end of the box toward the sun. Move around until, looking through the viewing opening, you see an image of the sun projected inside the box. An easy way to align with the sun is to make the shadow of the box and your head as small as possible.
  3. Your pinhole projector will show a small image of the sun that is useful during a partial eclipse to see the “bite” the moon takes out of the sun.

Instructions on how to build your own eclipse viewing device can also be watched in the video below.