NASA has invited citizen scientist to participate in a nationwide science experiment by collecting cloud and air temperature data and reporting it via their phones during the total solar eclipse that will occur on August 21 and pass through the US. NASA’s Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) Programme Observer (NASA GO) is a citizen science project that allows users to record observations with a free app. Using the free app and a thermometer, citizen scientists can observe how the eclipse changes atmospheric conditions near them, and contribute to a database used by students and scientists worldwide in order to study the effects of the eclipse on the atmosphere. “No matter where you are in North America, whether it’s cloudy, clear or rainy, NASA wants as many people as possible to help with this citizen science project,” Kristen Weaver, deputy coordinator for the project, said in a statement on Friday. “We want to inspire a million eclipse viewers to become eclipse scientists,” Weaver added. Observers in areas with a partial eclipse or outside the path of totality are encouraged to participate alongside those within totality. Crossing the country from Oregon to South Carolina over the course of an hour and a half, 14 states will experience night-like darkness for approximately two minutes in the middle of the day.
The eclipse enters the US at 10.15 am off the coast of Oregon and leaves US shores at approximately 2.50 pm in South Carolina. All of North America will experience at least a partial eclipse.
In order to participate, one needs to first download the GLOBE Observer app and then register to become a citizen scientist. The app will instruct to make the observations, which will be recorded on an interactive map. A thermometer may help to measure the air temperature, the statement said.