iREx and CRAQ astronomers and students welcomed nearly 1,000 people at UdeM to observe the great North American solar eclipse of 21 August. Members of the academic community as well as the general public gathered on the Louis-Colin parking lot terrace to experience this rare phenomenon.
Specially designed glasses for safe observation of the Sun were given to the participants. The few hundred pairs available were quickly distributed, which encouraged people to share the show with their neighbors. Participants also experimented with different techniques to project the image of the eclipsed Sun and several handyman even made their own “shoe box” projection device. Telescopes equipped with solar filters were also available to observe in greater detail the surface of the Sun and the movement of the Moon in front of our star.
Several astronomers were present, including Loïc Albert, Étienne Artigau, Paul Charbonneau, René Doyon, Robert Lamontagne, Lison Malo, Marie-Eve Naud and many students, to explain the phenomenon and answer the numerous questions of those who had gathered on site. At the same time, in the Claire-McNicoll building, a live broadcast of the total eclipse seen in the United States, enhanced the experience of this captivating phenomenon.
For Montrealers, the next celestial appointment will be June 10, 2021, when we will be treated to the end of a partial eclipse at sunrise. Another partial eclipse is scheduled for October 14, 2023. These two occasions will serve as a rehearsal for the great total eclipse of the Sun that will cross southern Quebec on April 8, 2024. Start your countdown!
The CRAQ and iREx would like to extend a warm and heartfelt thanks to all the students who have contributed voluntarily to make this activity a great success. The iREx thanks its partner, Éditions Multimondes, for offering the book “Les Planètes” as a door prize.
Coordonnateur du Centre de recherche en astrophysique du Québec
Téléphone : (514) 343-6111 poste 3195
Coordonnatrice scientifique à l’éducation et au rayonnement
Institut de recherche sur les exoplanètes
Téléphone : (514) 343-6111 poste 7077