By Michael Wilson, O.D.
Advanced Vision Care
On Monday, August 21, 2017, the United States will experience a solar eclipse. The moon will cover at least part of the sun for 2 to 3 hours. In some parts of the country there will be a zone of totality spanning from Oregon to South Carolina. This means the moon will completely block the sun resulting in day turning to darkness for up to 2 minutes and 40 seconds!
During this full eclipse one of nature’s greatest phenomena will be visible; the sun’s shimmering outer atmosphere called the corona!
The sun omits a large amount of UV light rays, and for this reason it is unsafe to look directly at the sun, even during the eclipse, without taking the correct precautions to protect your eyes and vision! The eclipse is a scene that should not be missed and should be viewed by everyone who has the chance. With this in mind, our doctors and staff here at Advanced Vision Care are glad to provide some tips which allow safe viewing of the solar eclipse.
• ONLY use approved solar eclipse viewers that meet the ISO 12312-2 standard.
Only four manufacturers have met this standard: Rainbow Symphony, American Paper Optics, Thousand Oaks Optical and TSE 17.
These specialty viewers are specifically made for the solar eclipse and can be found at our office, as well as other retailers. Sunglasses, polarized filters, or telescopes are not safe for eclipse viewing.
• Never look at the sun without your eclipse viewers covering your eyes.
To safely view the eclipse, cover your eyes with the eclipse viewers while looking away from the sun, observe the eclipse, and then turn away from the sun and remove the viewers.
Never remove the viewers while looking at the sun.