Coquimbo in the sights of the world for the next solar eclipse

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The Chilean skies have been recognized for years as natural laboratories for the analysis of the behavior of celestial bodies and this year they will be the scene of a total solar eclipse, a historical astronomical event that puts the country in the eye of the entire world.

Astronomers, specialists, amateurs, tourists have filled the occupation of the Coquimbo Region for the event, since this region represents the Umbra territory, that is to say, the shadow of the moon that will eclipse the sun will be total, during the afternoon of this 2nd of July 2019.

The whole eclipse can only be seen from a thin strip in the Region of Coquimbo and part of the Region of Atacama, however, the partial eclipse will be visible from all the Chilean territory, it will begin at 3:22 pm and the Total production will take place at 4:38 pm, which has generated a lot of expectation. This is because this phenomenon has occurred only on 3 occasions in the last 500 years in Coquimbo.

· The first time was on June 9, 1592, although there are no written records of the observation, it has been known that the shadow totally covered from La Serena, to Pichicuy, with an approximate duration of 1 minute and 40 seconds.

· The next eclipse occurred the morning of March 15th, 1839 crossing the central line between the town of Sotaquí and the current city of Monte Patria and the entire phenomenon lasted 2 minutes and 36 seconds.

· The last eclipse registered in the Coquimbo Region was on April 16th, 1893, in this one was possible to capture photographs and studies that determined certain changes in environmental behavior, for example the temperature dropped two degrees Celsius while the moon eclipsed Sun.

Golden Opportunity

This type of astronomical events represent for scientists an important opportunity for the study of hypotheses, because they allow the study of situations difficult to replicate in a laboratory and even to test theories that do not have to be directly related to it.

One of those unique moments in which our satellite covered us with sunlight was used to confirm that Albert Einstein was right in stating his theory of general relativity. The English astrophysicist Arthur Eddington could corroborate it shortly afterwards thanks to a solar eclipse at the end of May 1919 in the island of Prince, in Africa, when he took advantage of the darkness provided by the Moon to observe that the sun and its gravity are capable of bending the light.

Seguridad

La protección ocular es lo más importante el día del eclipse solar. Se deben utilizar filtros especiales para no producir daños irreversibles en los ojos. Es por eso que el uso de gafas especiales para eclipses es una de las opciones más usadas por los observadores.

· No mirar directamente al Sol con eclipse o sin eclipse sin filtros de protección.

· Solo utilizar filtros certificados con la etiqueta ISO 12312-2. Nunca utilizar filtros comercializados en el mercado sin ninguna certificación.

· Los lentes o filtros especiales deben estar en perfectas condiciones.

Safety

Eye protection is the most important on the day of the solar eclipse. Special filters must be used to avoid irreversible damage to the eyes. That is why the use of special glasses for eclipses is one of the most used options by observers.

· Do not look directly at the Sun with eclipse or without eclipse without protection filters.

· Only use filters certified with the ISO 12312-2 label. Never use filters marketed in the market without any certification.

· The glasses or special filters must be in perfect condition.

· Do not look at the Sun through a camera, phone, binocular, telescope or any other optical device without having a sunscreen certified for this use.

· Traditional sunglasses are not safe to look at the Sun, even if they are dark.

· Do not use x-ray plates to see the Sun.

· Take care that children use eye protection in a good way and always under the supervision of an adult.