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Eclipse Day Update!: Reports of Successful Use of the App From Solar Eclipse Timer Users All Across the Country! Heart Warming Stories About How the App Helped Them Enjoy The Eclipse! Thank You So Much Your Feedback! No Other Eclipse App has had This Much Positive Support After the Eclipse! I Am Gradified and Overwhelmed
After the Eclipse - 600 Positive Testimonials;  Including 5-Star Reviews, Positive Emails, YouTube and Astronomy Forum Comments
I've Started To Compile Them; Click Here

The 2017 Total Solar Eclipse was a great success for me, my family and a group of about 30 first time eclipse observers that came along with me to the rolling hills of Southeastern Tennessee.  We had perfect weather and a perfect eclipse from C1 to C4.  Saw shadow bands, a beautiful horizon, pin hole cresents and the sharp and fuzzy shadow phenomena.  Also witnessed the dissipation of small convective clouds as the penumbra became deeper and the temperature cooled.  That is the first time I have observed this eclipse weather related event.  I am working on YouTube Videos, please stay tuned!  I AM ALREADY WORKING UPGRADES AND UPDATES FOR 2019 AND 2020!  WILL DO UPDATES FOR 2024 A LITTLE FURTHER IN THE FUTURE!

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Frequently Asked Questions Tap/Click Here
**Final Version Numbers For The Eclipse.   Android 1.16b   -   Apple iOS 1.10 Build 1   Check Your Version On the About Screen!**

Get Into The Path Of Totality - Any Spot In The Path - Then It's Two Tap Set-up!
You Are Guided Through The Eclipse!  From 1st Contact Through 4th Contact.
Automatic GPS Location.  Automatic Contact Time Calculation.  Automatic Timing With Announcements
This App is NOT Useful If You Are NOT Going Into the Path of Totality!

Rick Fienberg, Press Officer of the American Astronomical Society and former Editor in Chief of Sky & Telescope Magazine will be using Solar Eclipse Timer to help him guide his eclipse tour!  Quote: "I lead eclipse tours -- On August 21st I plan to run Solar Eclipse Timer -- isn't the only app with audio prompts, but I think it's the one that makes the most effective use of the technology"  Thank you Rick, for using the app!  Click here to read the article.
Fred Espenak (Mr. Eclipse)  has Solar Eclipse Timer mentioned in his latest blog entry "Eclipse Day Checklist".  I am honored to be mentioned by Fred!  I have followed his eclipse work closely since preparing for my first eclipse in 2000.  Click here to see his blog post "Eclipse Day Checklist" for ideas on what to bring!
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Sky and Telescope Magazine - Featured Software - Spanning 15 years!   2002, 2003 and Now the August Issue, 2017!

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Featured Review in the August Issue of the Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada - Read It Here

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This is the original and the ONLY "Talking" timer designed specifically for total solar eclipses.  It was first developed by me for the 2002 eclipse.  It is now re-released with unique and amazing features NOT FOUND in any other solar eclipse app.  I have been to 3 total solar eclipses and the features in this app are based on real eclipse experience.  I know what is helpful to observe, enjoy and photograph a total solar eclipse.

Perfect For Our USA First Time Eclipse Observers!  Set Up With 2 Taps!

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Solar Eclipse Timer announces how to use your solar glasses.
It announces "GLASSES OFF" at 2nd Contact and announces "GLASSES ON" right before 3rd Contact.

We Are Your Total Solar Eclipse Timing Specialists
Based On The Experience With Observing 3 Previous Eclipses and Now the 2017 USA Eclipse
Developed For First Time Observers; Expert Eclipse Chasers; Professional Photographers; Teachers; Families; Children

Solar Eclipse Timer
("Talking" Timer)

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Solar Eclipse Timer:  The Most User-Friendly Eclipse Timing App Available! Get To The Path and It's 2 Tap Setup! This is the only "talking" solar eclipse timer available.  It is essential for first-time eclipse observers, but also sophisticated enough for expert eclipse chasers. Auto geolocation; Auto Contact Time Calculation; Auto Duration Calculation; Max Eclipse Mark; Spoken Phenomena Reminders; Spoken Countdowns; Partial Phase Image Sequence Calculator: Built-in Totality Video.

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Solar Eclipse Timer

Simply The BEST Eclipse Timing App Available - Easy For the Novice - Perfect For The Pro

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Main Timer: Main timer interface displays 4 contact times, Max Eclipse Time, and has a countdown timer for totality.
GPS Data: Geolocation to automatically find coordinates and calculate contact times. Tap one button to enter them into the timers.
Settings: Two demo programs that load contact times for your practice sessions. One has a built-in totality video.
Totality Video: To help you practice this demo plays a real totality video synchronized with the timers.  This is UNIQUE to this app!
Partial Phase Sequence: Incredible Feature!  We are the ONLY app company IN THE WORLD to offer this feature.  Based on your contact times automatically calculates the interval times you should use take 10 equally spaced partial phase pictures before and after totality to create a beautiful sequence.
Complete Help File: Extensive help file built into the app. Setup reminders, instructions, partial phase phenomena education all combined with the app
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1st Time Eclipse Observers
Super Simple - Get To The Path and
TAP TWICE

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Astronomers Seeing Their 1st Eclipse
The App Is Designed To Enable You To
Practice Every Aspect Of Eclipse Chasing

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The video below is a screenshot video of Solar Eclipse Timer playing its "built-in" Totality Practice Times Demo Program.  This type of practice feature is unique to this app!.  It's one of my eclipse totality videos edited to be synchronized to the announcements of Solar Eclipse Timer!  This demo program allows you to practice your eclipse photography plan for the period around totality over and over again while hearing the excitement of a real eclipse!

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Click Play Below To Play An Example Of A Partial Phase Phenomena Announcement

Click Play Below To Play An Example Of Totality Announcement

One Of the New Features I Am Most Excited About Is The Partial Phase Interval Sequence Calculator

This will help first-time eclipse chasers understand how to create beautiful composites.  Mine are below.
In addition, if you are on the run, trying to find clear skies, when you stop at your observing spot, this calculator instantly calculates the new interval times based on you new contact times.

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Click Here To Go To The Partial Phase Worksheet Page
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All Functions In The App

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The map above has the T-Mobile cell service map laid over the totality path map.  You see there are many areas with limited or no cell service. Pink has service, gray does not.  Out West the strongest coverage follows the main roads.  Most cellular providers are going to have coverage very close to this.  If you are relying on a navigation app that requires cellular service and/or internet service you may not have data, therefore, not have the ability to locate in the gray areas.  The example data in the screenshot above is in a flat area about 35 miles East of Casper, Wyoming and about 10 miles North of Route 25, (just East of Rolling Hills).  There is poor cellular service here since the coverage basically follows Route 25 for a distance of about 10 to 15 miles to each side of the road.

Geolocation systems in smart phones and cellular enabled iPads use a number of complex methods to find your location in addition to using GPS satellites. It is a mixture of Wi-Fi, Assisted GPS, Digital Compass and Cellular information. The goal is to provide the most accurate geolocation information as quickly as possible. Most methods will require the use of cellular triangulation for rapid geolocation. Most likely, you have never been in a location where your smart phone used GPS satellite signals exclusively to geolocate.  Smart phones should be able to use native GPS signals but it unclear how and where this can be tested before eclipse day.

Furthermore, there is going to be a tremendous load of cellular usage on eclipse day and networks could get overloaded, be intermittent or go down.  You have to think about an alternate method to geolocate on the day of the eclipse.  That emergency method could be your car's navigation system, but you may get presented with data in the decimal, minute and second format.  This companion app to Solar Eclipse TimerTM is a simple format converter that I am pleased to provide as a free download for this rare, but possible scenario.

Luckily the Solar Eclipse Timer app DOES NOT require cell service to work. ALL of the calculations for contact times are done IN THE APP.  The only think you need are your GPS coordinates in decimal format and you can calculate your contact times.  Whatever way you can get your coordinates, your phone based on cellular geolocation, GPS satellites from your phone, a GPS handheld device, GPS in your car, path maps; you just have to get those values into the app in decimal format and you are set!  Solar Eclipse Timer does not require an internet connection to work!

Click Here To See Maps Of Testing The App On The Southern Edge Of The Path Of Totality
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The History Of Solar Eclipse Timer, The "Talking Timer" Software

A Lot Has Changed In 15 Years

The first version of our software was written to run on Windows 98 and the mobile Windows operating system called Windows Pocket PC found on the Personal Digital Assistants (PDA's) at the time. The popular PDA at the time was the Compaq iPAQ Pocket PC. It had a total of 64 megabytes of memory and ran on a processor called ARM SA1110. This was a number of years before smart phones. However, the next logical step was to blend the functionality of PDA's with the ability to make phone calls. Early smart phones were released by a number of companies around 2002. The first iPhone wasn't released until June of 2007. During the early years of releasing various model smart phones, the internal processors and the operating systems were so varied it would have been impossible to update our software to run on such a multitude of devices. Now that the market has coalesced around the Apple and Android format smart phones it is time to re-release our software just in time for The Great America Total Solar Eclipse.

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Microsoft Pocket PC Operating System
64 Megabytes TOTAL Memory

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iPAQ Docking/Charging Station
COM 1 Serial Connection

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Compaq iPAQ Pocket PC
Circa 2001 - Series 3700

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Original Pocket PC
Eclipse Timer Inteface (2002)

In June of 2001, we traveled to Zambia, Africa to witness our first Total Eclipse of the Sun. Wow! A Total Solar Eclipse is a spectacular experience, believe me! We spent many hours studying solar eclipses and preparing to do photography prior to our first solar eclipse. When we returned to the states I realized that a software program that helped people time the events of a solar eclipse would be very useful. We then conceived, designed and developed the first solar eclipse "talking timer".

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Chromosphere - 1000mm Lens 1/500 s Exposure
Zambia, Africa 6/21/2001

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Inner Corona - 1000mm Lens 1/60 s Exposure
Zambia, Africa 6/21/2001

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Full Corona - 1000mm Lens 1.2 s Exposure
Zambia, Africa 6/21/2001

Video Of The Total Solar Eclipse Zambia, Africa.  Listen To The Crickets During Totality!

In December of 2002 when we returned to Africa, this time in Zimbabwe, to witness our second Total Solar Eclipse.  Our newly developed solar eclipse talking timer software program assisted the entire group of eclipse chasers that were with us.  The program worked great, just as designed!  It was so helpful and so much fun to hear the announcements of the important events in a Total Solar Eclipse!  It was at this eclipse that we saw the rare phenomenon of shadow bands (more on that later).

Additionally, for the December 2002 eclipse, the editor of Sky and Telescope Magazine, Richard Fienberg used our talking timer software to help him guide the eclipse chasers that were on the Sky and Telescope solar eclipse tour.  And Sky and Telescope Magazine featured our software as one of the "Hot New Products For 2003."

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Cresecent 2 Minutes Before Totality
Zimbabwe, Africa 12/4/2002

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Inner Corona and Chromosphere
Zimbabwe, Africa 12/4/2002

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Cresecent 2 After  Before Totality
Zimbabwe, Africa 12/4/2002

Video Of The Total Solar Eclipse, Zimbabwe, Africa

In 2006 we witnessed our 3rd Total Solar Eclipse. This time we moved into the path of totality on the Mediterranean Sea while sailing on a cruise ship. Since we were on a moving ship for this Total Solar Eclipse we chose to document it mainly with video and enjoy more of the eclipse with our eyes.

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Diamond Ring/Baily's Beads
Mediterranean Sea,  3/29/2006

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Totality
Mediterranean Sea, 3/29/2006

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3rd Contact
Mediterranean Sea, 3/29/2006

Video Of The Total Solar Eclipse On The Mediterranean Sea

Watch It Get Dark During A Total Solar Eclipse!
Totality Is Not Pitch Black As It Appears To Be In This Video
I Had The Video Camera Set So It Would Not Increase The Exposure As The Light Dimmed.  I Wanted To Document The Dimming Of the Light.

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Partial Phase Phenomena

Interesting Things Can Be Observed Between 1st and 2nd Contact

Observing a Total Solar Eclipse Is a social event!  You will most likely be in a open area, like a field or parking lot with dozens or hundreds of other people!  Its fun and exciting and everyone is anticipating the main event, totality.  You can hear the excitement in my videos above!  Most people only casually observe the progress of the partial phases after they visualize 1st Contact.  People will be milling around and there will be a lot of chatter.  Many eclipse observers never have the opportunity to actually study the partial phase phenomena, so they miss it.  You will NOT miss it, because this app announces the reminders!  Solar Eclipse Timer provides two important benefits/functions.  1.  It will educate people about these phenomena.  2.  It will remind you to observe for them.  This is the huge benefit of a "talking timer" for solar eclipses!

Temperature:  As the Moon blocks the light of the Sun there is a gradual, measurable decrease in the temperature!  I measured this change in Zimbabwe, Africa with a scientific temperature recorder.  Solar Eclipse Timer will announce reminders to feel for the temperature change 3 times as the partial phases progress.

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Temperature Data From A Field In Beitbridge, Zimbabwe, Africa.  December 4, 2002
Totality Duration 1m 22s
Data by GMT

Lighting:  As the partial phase becomes deeper and deeper the light from the Sun is blocked enough that it begins to affect the amount of light hitting the Earth. Not only does it slowly get darker, the color and the character of the light is different.  The entire area gets a perception of you looking through a very faint gray filter.  As the Sun crescent gets deeper, the light from the Sun is not as diffuse, so shadows begin to have a sharper edge to them.  Solar Eclipse Timer will remind you to observe for these effects at 10 minutes before totality.

Animals:  Animals think nighttime is arriving and they begin to behave as such. Birds will roost, grazing animals with stop feeding and crickets will start chirping. In Zambia, Africa in 2001 we observed the eclipse in a large field with dense overgrowth of vegetation at the borders of the field. We could hear the crickets as they began to be fooled by the decrease in light. Solar Eclipse Timer will make an announcement at 8 minutes before totality to remind you to observe for animal behavior changes.

Shadow bands:  At 3 minutes before totality there is a warning to observe for shadow bands and what is meant is to “start” to look for shadow bands.  They will probably occur closer to totality when the crescent Sun is thinner.  Shadow bands are caused by the narrow slit of sunlight rays from the thin crescent of the Sun being bent as the light passes through warmer and cooler cells of air in the atmosphere.  Some research suggests that they are caused by the change in the air temperature at the interface between the umbral shadow and the penumbra.  Shadow bands are faint “bands of shadows” or undulations of light that can be seen on the ground.  The appearance is difficult to describe because they have a complex shape and a complex motion and could vary a little with each total solar eclipse.  We saw them clearly for about 15 to 20 seconds in Zimbabwe, Africa.

At 30 seconds after 3rd Contact there is another announcement to remind you to observe for shadow bands.

Here is the best way I can describe them:  They had a serpentine shape like a continuous snake.  They were side by side about 12 inches apart covering the entire ground around us.  They had a continuous motion that moved away from us but also in a left to right direction. The phenomena did not last long.  It was really cool!!

Contact Email  foxwoodastronomy@gmail.com

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Instructional Videos To Help You Prepare For The 2017 USA Eclipse

Copyright 2002 - 2017 Solar Eclipse Timer.  All Rights Reserved.

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