you’re gonna need some special eye protection
equipment. Nothing fancy here; just an opaque sheet
of cardboard with a 5 mm hole drilled in its center.
You then hold the “projector” about 3-4 feet off a
smooth light colored surface (e.g., concrete sidewalk)
and a viewable image of the sun can be watched
throughout the duration of the eclipse.
Since this is Nuts & Volts, however, a piece of
pedestrian cardboard just isn’t going to cut it for
viewing the eclipse. Therefore, we designed a special
pinhole solar-viewing projector that you can print on
any 3D printer (see Figure 3). The printable files for
these projectors can be downloaded from the link for
You will find four different projector files: two for
Nuts &Volts and two for SERVO Magazine (Nuts &
Volts’ sister publication on robotics). These projectors
come in either a solid “filled” version or a more stylish
Just print your preferred projector, stand with the
sun coming over your back shoulder, hold the
projector 3-4 feet above a sidewalk, and enjoy
watching the astronomical event of the decade.
Remember: NEVER look directly into the sun —
especially during a solar eclipse.
For more information about the upcoming 2017
solar eclipse, visit https://eclipse2017.nasa.gov or
22 August 2017
■ FIGURE 3. Print your own 3D pinhole solar projector,
available in four fun shapes.
■ FIGURE 2. This map shows a detailed image of the moon's umbral shadow as it passes over the US during the
August 2017 total solar eclipse. Credit: NASA/Goddard/SVS/Ernie Wright.