Green

What You Need to Know About the Eclipse and Its History in New Jersey

ac4d224bd7b09e4f1aa0_map.jpg
The lunar shadow first enters at 9:05 a.m. PDT. Totality begins in Lincoln City, OR, at 10:15 a.m. PDT. Totality ends at 2:48 p.m. in Charleston,SC. The lunar shadow leaves the East Coast at 4:09 p.m. Credits: NASA/SVS
46f0515fcd3c21d6544d_DSC03311.JPG
Paul Cirillo ©2017 TAPinto Montville Credits: Melissa Benno
4b429a79f9c6fa04e09f_DSC03310.JPG
Paul Cirillo Credits: Melissa Benno
6940c576d15d09b0ca66_eclipse.jpg
This illustration depicts the alignment of the sun, the moon and Earth – which only perfectly occurs about once every 18 months, on average. The umbra and penumbra are shown. Credits: NASA
ac4d224bd7b09e4f1aa0_map.jpg

NEW JERSEY — The United States will experience a solar eclipse on Monday, Aug. 21, which New Jerseyans can partially view—if the weather cooperates.

If you lived in one of the 14 states the eclipse is crossing with its 70-mile wide path, you’d be all set.

But if you use safety glasses to view the event, between 1:23 p.m. and 4 p.m., and most especially at 2:44 p.m., you’ll be able to see a partial eclipse. The sun will look like a crescent moon.

Sign Up for E-News

In Illinois, which will experience the eclipse for the longest period of time, the phenomenon will last less than three minutes.

Astronomy lecturer Paul Cirillo was on hand at the Montville Township Public library on Aug. 2 to give residents a taste of the Great American Solar Eclipse, as it’s being called.

“The first half of my talk is to convince you to go see this,” he said with a laugh.

He said this eclipse will occur only over the U.S., which hasn’t happened since 1778.

“They happen all over the earth, though,” he said.

A 1925 eclipse, for instance, cut across northern Manhattan, he said.

The sun, moon and earth line up perfectly to make an eclipse about every 18 months, but the shadow is often in uninhabited portions of the planet, he said.

When it comes to solar eclipses, New Jersey isn’t totally “in the dark” historically.

New Jersey’s own Menlo Park inventor Thomas Edison traveled to Wyoming with a group of other scientists to view the 1878 eclipse. The 31-year-old had just invented the phonograph. He wanted to test his newest invention: the tasimeter, Cirillo said.

The tasimeter measures small changes in temperature. Unfortunately, Edison was trying to measure the temperature of the corona of the sun, and it gave off so much heat that it was off the scale of the invention. Before Edison could readjust the scale, the eclipse was over.

Some say that during the fishing trip that followed the eclipse, a bamboo rod was thrown onto a campfire, and when Edison saw the way it burned in individual strands, it “sparked” an interest in him to use bamboo in light bulb filaments. Others regard this story as myth.

Princeton professor Albert Einstein also has ties to solar eclipses. The events confirmed his Theory of General Relativity, which states that all masses cause a curvature of space-time.

During the 1919 eclipse, scientists measured the positions of stars, then compared them with their normal positions in the sky and proved Einstein’s theory. After The New York Times published the findings, Einstein became a household name.

Cirillo advised those traveling to see the eclipse to plan ahead, and take plenty of water and food.

“Watch out for traffic jams, because you’ll have to move if the weather is going to be bad where you were planning to watch,” he said.

Humidity in the air and rain will affect watching conditions. Further, about 200 million people live within one hour’s drive of the path of the eclipse, according to NASA’s eclipse website.

“But in New Jersey, the sky will not turn dark,” he said.

No matter what, he said, residents should wear special viewing glasses to see the eclipse.

“They’re inexpensive and readily available,” he said. “You need to supervise children in their use.”

Sad if you’re not able to travel to see this one? You can head to Argentina for the next eclipse, in the summer of 2019, or you can stay in the U.S. for the 2024 eclipse. But your closest vantage point will be Syracuse, New York, or in the Adirondacks.

To see a livestream of the eclipse on Aug. 21, check out Eclipse. For more information about the safety glasses, visit Glasses. Goggles must state that they comply with the ISO 12312-2 standard.

The books “Edison and His Inventions: Including the Many Incidents, Anecdotes and Interesting Particulars,” edited by James Baird McClure and “Eclipse: The Celestial Phenomenon that Changed the Course of History” by Duncan Steel, and these articles: Space and Eclipses were also used to research this article.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

New Brunswick

The Jaffe Briefing - January 18, 2018

OUR TAKE ON THE NEWS IN NEW JERSEY

STATEWIDE – The state has found a new, innovative way for you to wait on a line, unveiling a pair of mobile MVC offices. It is all about getting those friendly folks at the Motor Vehicle Commission to serve you even better, without the need for you to visit one of those dreadful offices and join various lines of equally-bored wannabe motorists. State ...

The Jaffe Briefing - January 16, 2018

OUR TAKE ON THE NEWS IN NEW JERSEY

TRENTON - Red-blooded New Jerseyans, in their respectable Republican cloth coats, have been dreading today. An actual breathing liberal, once again, takes over the governor's office and ruins everything. It was eight strong years of solid conservative stewardship, they think, as they trudge up the stairs of the War Memorial in Trenton, scuffing their ...

The Jaffe Briefing - January 12, 2018

OUR TAKE ON THE NEWS IN NEW JERSEY

YOUR BACKYARD - If we don't kill our bears, their children and grandchildren will be living in your backyard. That is one way to summarize a 12-page report from state wildlife officials, claiming that Gov.-elect Phil Murphy's plan to stop the bear hunts could cause their population to double by 2022, NJ.com reports. Murphy wants to ...

The Jaffe Briefing - January 11, 2018

OUR TAKE ON THE NEWS IN NEW JERSEY

UP THE CREEK - New Jersey has a weaker tax base, higher taxes and simmering fury amongst taxpayers. It is a recipe for financial trouble, reports The Wall Street Journal, noting it has been more than 20 years since New Jersey was current on its pension payments, leaving the state nearly $100 billion in the hole. And while ...

The Jaffe Briefing - January 10, 2018

OUR TAKE ON THE NEWS IN NEW JERSEY

TRENTON - Gov. Chris Christie talked for more than two hours yesterday, in his farewell "State of the State" address, highlighting all of his accomplishments. He served eight years (well, minus the two years he ran for President) and has done so much that we must recognize and appreciate. So, without further ado, free of slant or snark, here is ...

The Jaffe Briefing - January 9, 2018

OUR TAKE ON THE NEWS IN NEW JERSEY

TRENTON - With the end of this session of the New Jersey Legislature, there were plenty of bills flying everywhere yesterday, furiously voted on and moved from desk to desk and chamber to chamber. When the dust settled yesterday, and exhausted lawmakers ran out of things on which to vote, here's some stuff heading on to the lame-duck governor's ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_f91ed86077ea29dfd56e_image

Fri, January 19

Plainsboro

Project Feeder Watch

Green Home & Garden

Sat, January 20

Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers, New Brunswick

Set in Stone: Lithography in France, 1815-1900

Arts & Entertainment

Sat, January 20

Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers, New Brunswick

It's Just a Job: Bill Owens and Studs Terkel on ...

Arts & Entertainment

Rutgers Equestrian Team Coach Elected As IHSA Second Vice President

January 18, 2018

ORLANDO, Fla. — The Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) held their annual board meeting in Orlando, Florida, Jan. 3-6. The 55-member board met in general session and in individual committees during the three-day event.

Kelly Francfort Named Second Vice President

Kelly Francfort, coach of the Rutgers team, chair of IHSA Zone 3 and the public relations committee, was named ...

Burger Business Turns ​Off the Grill at The Yard

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - Another business at The Yard@College Avenue, Bella’s Burger Shack, is now closed, and unlike the neighboring Starbucks, it​ has apparently​ left for good.

A sign had been posted on the front door of the restaurant, reading that Dec. 22, 2017 w​as the last day the shack would be in business.

Bella’s Burger Shack, which has its other location in ...

Rutgers Men's Basketball Coach Approved for $8M Raise, 3 Year Contract Extension

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - Rutgers University officials have signed off on a three-year extension for head men’s basketball coach Steve Pikiell, now set to run through the 2023-2024 season.

The move came at a specially-called Board of Governors meeting on Wednesday afternoon, Jan. 10.

Pikiell’s initial contract was signed in March 2016 and set to run five years, of which he’d be ...

OPINION

Letter to the Editor: Proposed Medicaid Cuts Threaten Families

January 5, 2018

Medicaid – the safety next for millions of Americans – continues to be under attack.

Whether debating healthcare legislation, tax reform or deficit reduction, lawmakers see Medicaid as some magic source of ready-made cost savings. Many don’t seem to understand how intertwined Medicaid is within society; a lifeline for so many families – like mine.

I am the parent of ...

Inherited IQ Can Increase in Early Childhood: Rutgers Study

January 18, 2018

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - When it comes to intelligence, environment and education matter – more than we think.

Those are the findings of Rutgers University psychologists Louis Matzel and Bruno Sauce, based on an integrative review of recent studies on the nature of human intelligence. Their study is published in the December issue of the Psychological Bulletin, a journal of ...

Get Off the Couch. Walk the Dog. Live Longer.

January 15, 2018

“Sitting is the new smoking”. This is the new mantra in cardiology and global population health. Sitting, or a sedentary lifestyle, has long been known as a risk factor for the development of heart disease.

Excessive sitting is also associated with a higher mortality rate. Is sitting really as bad as smoking for your health? Why is sitting so detrimental? What strategies can combat ...