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Protect Your Eyes Watching the Sun

Never look directly at the Sun without proper eye protection. You can seriously hurt your eyes, and even go blind.

Illustration image

Wear eclipse glasses for a solar eclipse.

Make sure your eclipse glasses are safe, or the Sun’s UV radiation can seriously injure the retinas in the eyes.


Safely Watch a Solar Eclipse

The only way to safely view the Sun – eclipsed or not – is to either project or filter the Sun's rays.

The Sun’s UV radiation can burn the retinas in the eyes leading to permanent damage or even blindness. This can occur even if your eyes are exposed to direct sunlight for just a few seconds.

Projector or Filters?

Projection works well with or without a telescope or binoculars. However, don't look through the telescope’s eyepiece or side-mounted finder scope while projecting the Sun's image to a screen.

DIY pinhole projector
DIY: Simple pinhole projector.
DIY: Simple pinhole projector from two sheets of paper is easy to make.

Eclipse Glasses:

If you are not the DIY type, check online or with your local natural history, space museum, or astronomy club for where to get proper eclipse glasses.

Welder's Goggles:

NASA recommends welder's glasses rated 14 or higher. These can be found at your local welding supply store. Keep in mind that welder glass grading may be different in different countries.

Use Proper Filters:

You can use special solar filters to watch the Sun during a solar eclipse, but use the proper type of solar filter that is designed for eclipses. Check that filters do not crack under the Sun’s magnified and focused intensity. Solar filters must be treated with care or they can quickly become damaged and unsafe to use.

How Not to Watch Solar Eclipses

According to NASA, the following materials should never be used to view a solar eclipse:

  • Don't use color film.
  • Don't use medical X-ray film with images on them.
  • Don't use smoked glass.
  • Don't use any kind of sunglasses.
  • Don't use CDs or computer floppy disks.

Topics: Astronomy, Eclipses, Sun

Next Annular Solar Eclipse begins in


Annular Solar Eclipse

Feb 26, 2017 at 12:10 UTCSee more


Eclipse Lookup

Protect Your Eyes

  1. Never Look Directly at the Sun
  2. Simple Pinhole Projector
  3. Eclipse Projector in a Box
  4. Binoculars / Telescope Projector

Eclipses & Transits

Solar Eclipses

  1. Different Types of Eclipses
  2. What are Solar Eclipses?
  3. Total Solar Eclipses
  4. Partial Solar Eclipses
  5. Annular Solar Eclipses
  6. Solar Eclipses in History
  7. Solar Eclipse Myths and Superstitions
  8. Magnitude of Eclipses


Planet Transits

  1. Transit of Mercury
  2. Transit of Venus

Astronomy Index

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