Response to the first two eclipse bulletins was overwhelming and our supply was quickly depleted. The initial bulletin distribution required a great deal of time, secretarial work and postage. To conserve resources and to make bulletin responses faster and more efficient, the procedure for requesting eclipse bulletins has been undergoing a series of modifications. Currently bulletins may be obtained as follows.
Single copies of the bulletins are available at no cost and may be ordered by sending a 9 x 12 inch SASE (self addressed stamped envelope) with sufficient postage (11 oz. or 310 g.). Use stamps only; cash or checks cannot be accepted. Requests within the U. S. may use the Postal Service's Priority Mail for $3.00. Please print either the eclipse date (year & month) or the NASA RP number in the lower left corner of the SASE. Requests from outside the U. S. and Canada may send nine international postal coupons to cover postage. Exceptions to the postage requirements will be made for international requests where political or economic restraints prevent the transfer of funds to other countries. We will also relax the SASE requirements to professional researchers and scientists provided their request comes on official stationary. It would also be helpful if they included a self addressed address label. Finally, all requests should be accompanied by a copy of the request form. Bulletin requests may be made to either of the authors. Comments, suggestions, criticisms and corrections are solicited to improve the content and layout in subsequent editions of this publication series, and may be sent to Espenak.
As we enter the age of the 'Information Highway', it seems fitting that the eclipse bulletins should be served electronically. Thanks to the initiative and expertise of Dr. Joe Gurman (GSFC/Solar Physics Branch), the first four eclipse bulletins are all available over the Internet. Formats include a BinHex-encoded version of the original MS Word file + PICT + GIF scanned GNC maps, as well as a hypertext version. They can be read or downloaded via the World-Wide Web server with a Mosaic or Netscape client from Goddard's Solar Data Analysis Center (SDAC) home page: http://umbra.nascom.nasa.gov/sdac.html. Most of the files are also available via anonymous ftp. In addition, path data for all central eclipses through the year 2000 are available via http://eclipse.gsfc.nasa.gov/SEpubs/predictions/year-month-day.html, where the string year-month-day is replaced with the date of interest (e.g. - 1999-august-11). For more details, please see pages 17 and 18. Naturally, all future eclipse bulletins will also be available via Internet.
Since the eclipse bulletins are of a limited and finite size, they cannot include everything needed by every single scientific investigation. For instance, some investigators may require exact contact times which include lunar limb effects or for a specific observing site not listed in the bulletin. Other investigations may need customized predictions for an aerial rendezvous or from the path limits for grazing eclipse experiments. F. Espenak would like to assist such investigations by offering to calculate additional predictions for any professionals or large groups of amateurs. Please contact Espenak with complete details and eclipse prediction requirements.
We would like to acknowledge the valued contributions of a number of individuals who were essential to the success of this publication. The format and content of the NASA eclipse bulletins has drawn heavily upon over 40 years of eclipse Circulars published by the U. S. Naval Observatory. We owe a debt of gratitude to past and present staff of that institution who have performed this service for so many years. The many publications and algorithms of Dr. Jean Meeus have served to inspire a life-long interest in eclipse prediction. We thank Francis Reddy, who helped develop the data base of geographic coordinates for major cities used in the local circumstances predictions. Dr. Wayne Warren graciously provided a draft copy of the IOTA Observer's Manual for use in describing contact timings near the path limits. Dr. Jay M. Pasachoff kindly reviewed the manuscript and offered a number of valuable suggestions. The availability of the eclipse bulletins via the Internet is due entirely to the efforts of Dr. Joseph B. Gurman. The support of Environment Canada is acknowledged in the acquisition and arrangement of the weather data. Finally, the authors thank Goddard's Laboratory for Extraterrestrial Physics for several minutes of CPU time on the LEPVX2 computer. The time was used for verifying predictions generated with the Macintosh.
A special thanks goes to Roger W. Sinnott of Sky & Telescope for calling our attention to a discrepancy in the NASA bulletin times of maximum eclipse. In previous bulletins, these times are sometimes in error by one or two minutes for stations where the eclipse magnitude is small (<0.2). The error decreases for locations near the umbral path and drops to zero on the center line. Fortunately, all contact times are unaffected by the bug and the software has been corrected in producing the current bulletin.
Permission is freely granted to reproduce any portion of this Reference Publication, including data, figures, maps, tables and text. All uses and/or publication of this material should be accompanied by an appropriate acknowledgment of the source (e.g. - "Reprinted from Total Solar Eclipse of 1997 March 9, Espenak and Anderson, 1995"). We would also appreciate receiving a copy of the publication in which these data are used.
The names and spellings of countries, cities and other geopolitical regions are not authoritative, nor do they imply any official recognition in status. Corrections to names, geographic coordinates and elevations are actively solicited in order to update the data base for future eclipses. All calculations, diagrams and opinions presented in this publication are those of the authors and they assume full responsibility for their accuracy.
Fred Espenak Jay Anderson NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center Prairie Weather Centre Planetary Systems Branch, Code 693 900-266 Graham Avenue Greenbelt, MD 20771 Winnipeg, MB, USA CANADA R3C 3V4 Fax: (301) 286-0212 Fax: (204) 983-0109 Internet: Bitnet: firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
NASA Eclipse Bulletin RP # Publication Date Annular Solar Eclipse of 1994 May 10 1301 April 1993 Total Solar Eclipse of 1994 November 3 1318 October 1993 Total Solar Eclipse of 1995 October 24 1344 July 1994 Total Solar Eclipse of 1997 March 9 1369 July 1995 - - - - - - - - - - - - - future - - - - - - - - - - - - - Total Solar Eclipse of 1998 February 26 ---- Fall 1995 Total Solar Eclipse of 1999 August 11 ---- Summer 1996 Total Solar Eclipse of 2001 June 21 ---- Summer 1997
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