by Hugh McDonald, Executive Producer July 3rd, 2019
An Ideum team trekked to Junin, Argentina, to capture images of the July 2, 2019 solar eclipse using the newly-updated Eclipse Camera 2019 mobile app. Our intrepid travelers pored over weather forecasts, scouted potential sites, and braved brisk winds to find the best possible spot for seeing the eclipse within the narrow path of totality running through South America. The exciting result? Images and video that reveal the power of this amazing stellar event and help researchers learn more about the atmosphere of the sun—including the stunning image above captured by an app user near the border of Chile and Argentina.
Developed in collaboration with the Space Sciences Laboratory at UC Berkeley, the Eclipse Camera app was designed to help people use their smartphones to take great pictures of this hard-to-capture event and share them with researchers. The Ideum team is already beginning to sort through the stream of images coming in from app users in Chile and Argentina.
This first-of-its-kind mobile app guides users through the process of calibrating their phone's camera, attaching an external lens, and aiming the camera at the precise spot in the sky where totality will occur. The app then takes over the phone's camera and takes bracketed images to ensure that the user captures the widest possible range of exposures.
We debuted the initial version of the Eclipse Camera app for the 2017 solar eclipse, and hundreds of people captured and shared stunning images of that event. Our new version of the app added the ability to take video and provided instructions in both Spanish and English.
We're very proud of our long-standing partnership with the Space Sciences Laboratory and look forward to updating the app again to capture future eclipse—including the next one visible in the US on April 8, 2024!