Ellison Steele, 3, and Cole Steele, 7, test some solar eclipse glasses at the Brandon Township Public Library. A solar eclipse will occur on Aug. 21. Photo by Patrick McAbee.
By David Fleet
Dustin Scriven recalls the solar eclipse of May 12, 2012.
“The 2012 eclipse was about 30 percent here in Michigan and occurred just before sunset,” said Scriven, a 2011 Brandon High School graduate. “It was a cloudy evening and lasted just a few minutes—still it’s amazing. It’s great people get excited over the eclipse—it just does not happen very often. An eclipse is something millions of people can experience together.”
Scriven, earned a Bachelor of Science in astrophysics from Michigan State University and is currently working on a doctorate degree in physics at Texas A & M.
For years Scriven has been a local astronomer and ventured out at night to remote locations to study the heavens utilizing a variety of telescopes along with precision photography equipment.
“The eclipse will get people outside and maybe learn something about our world,” he said.
Scriven will one of millions who will be watching the Aug. 21 solar eclipse which arrives in southeastern Michigan at 1:03 p.m. the maximum will be 2:27 p.m. and ends at 3:47 p.m. The eclipse will be about 80 percent in Michigan.
From 1- 3 p.m. the Brandon Township Public Library, 304 South St., will host an eclipse viewing party and provide protective eye care for those wishing to safely watch the eclipse. The event will provide information, live streaming NASA videos, free viewing glasses, and activities in the community room beginning at 1 p.m. Viewing will be held in the library Children’s Garden and on the lawn. Bring lawn chairs or blankets.
Scriven will be in College Station Texas for the eclipse where it will be about 70 percent.
Ken Bertin, however, will travel 1,368 miles from Michigan to Casper, Wy. for the 2 minutes and 26 seconds event.
The western city will be a total eclipse location—one of 10 he has viewed where the moon passes between the sun and the Earth, obscuring the sun. He watched the eclipse in India, Mexico, Libya, Bolivia, China, Australia, Spain, and twice in South Africa.
“Michigan will have an 80 percent solar eclipse,” said Bertin, 71 is a West Bloomfield resident and member of the Warren Astronomical Society who recently discussed the upcoming solar eclipse at the Brandon Township Library. “At 80 percent it appears you can watch the eclipse—just don’t do that not even for a second. The only time is when it’s a total eclipse, Michigan will only have a partial.”
Bertin has been a Warren Astronomical Society member since 1971 and has given approximately 300 presentations on a variety of celestial topics.
“Use common sense when watching the eclipse,” he said. “You cannot use regular sunglasses no matter how dark the lenses are on the glasses. Anyone not within the path of totality, which will extend across the country from its entrance point in Oregon to South Carolina where it will exit, will need eye protection to watch the event.”