Solar Eclipse Eye Safety!!

In about a month, the Kentuckiana region is directly in the path of The Great American Solar Eclipse!!

solar eclipse

This solar eclipse will occur in our area on August 21st at 12:21 PM EST.

This eclipse will cross the entire continental US.  While the eclipse will be visible from nearly every state, it will be especially spectacular in the Louisville area.

Here there is predicted to be a 90-95% partial eclipse, and if you head to southwestern Kentucky (around Hopkinsville) it will be a complete solar eclipse for about 2 minutes!

These events area extremely rare with the last total eclipse occurring here back in February 26th, 1979!!

eclipse map

While this once in a life time event is amazing, it is also EXTREMELY DANGEROUS!

It is absolutely critical that this miracle of nature be viewed through an approved device.

These devices include:

  1. ISO Certified eclipse glasses (certification 12312-2:2015)
  2. Welders Shield or Filter with shade #12-14
  3. Viewed indirectly with a Pinhole Camera – A great project for kids!  (NASA project link)

Wearing sunglasses or even ‘taking a quick peek’ can cause irreparable damage.

Don’t Risk It!!

Solar Retinopathy

normal oct

The eye focus light that enters the eye back onto the retina.  In particular, the light is focused most strongly onto the macula, which is the center part of the vision (normal imaging of macula above).

However, when high intensity, direct sunlight is focused on the macula, it heats up the pigmented layer underneath the retina.  This layer gets so hot from the high intensity light that it actually burns the cells that sense light in the center part of the vision (see above).

When this area is damaged, vision will be decreased and you may noticed a blind spot in the center of your vision.  Sometimes this condition improves over time but often the vision does not completely return and permanent vision loss occurs.

If you would like to know if the eclipse glasses you have are safe, please email or stop by our office and we’d be happy to talk with you further.

Be Safe and Enjoy the Eclipse!!

Dr. Wolf