On August 1, 2008, the Exploratorium will webcast a total eclipse of the sun as seen from remote Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region in northwestern China near the Mongolian border. Our scientists and media development crew will capture dramatic telescopic images of the eclipse, which will be webcast via the Exploratorium’s website and in Second Life. The program will be hosted by Exploratorium scientists Dr. Robert Semper and Dr. Paul Doherty and feature NASA Heliospheric physicist Dr. Eric Christian who will show some of the latest imagery of the sun from NASA’s SOHO and STEREO missions, and explain how the solar wind can impact us here on Earth.
On Exploratorium Island in Second Life, we’ll host an eclipse viewing event featuring the live webcast, interactive exhibits, and music. You can view the eclipse webcast in the amphitheater on Exploratorium island as well as other sims including Sploland, Spindrift, Nanotechnology, UK Future Focus, Science School, and SciLands.
Putting on this event in SL is presenting some different challenges than the first time we brought a total solar eclipse webcast there in March 2006. It’s a great opportunity to continue to learn about putting on museum events in a virtual world. I’ll be sharing more details of the event as well as details of those challenges in the coming days.