Colloquium: December 6, 2016

When the Moon Eats the Sun: The Total Solar Eclipse of August 2017

Phil Plait

Tuesday, December 6, 2016 at 2:00 P.M. in the Pearl Young Theater
(video within Langley firewall only)


On August 21, 2017, there will be magic in the sky: a total solar eclipse, the first one visible in the United States since 1979! These rare and amazing events are among the most beautiful of all astronomical phenomena, and their impact on humanity has a rich and fascinating history. Yet they are also saddled with many misconceptions and fears — Can you go blind watching one? Do they emit harmful radiation? Astronomer and author Phil Plait provides the truth about eclipses in a humorous and engaging way, featuring the latest scientific photographs, and will show you how you too can watch this spectacular display of cosmic synchronicity.


After earning his doctorate in astronomy at the University of Virginia, Dr. Phil Plait worked as a NASA contractor at the Goddard Space Flight Center, working with the Hubble Space Telescope. Dr. Plait began a career in public outreach and education with the Bad Astronomy website and blog, debunking bad science and popular misconceptions. He is host of the ‘Crash Course Astronomy’ video series from PBS and head science writer for Bill Nye’s new TV show which will screen on Netflix in spring 2017.