Committees

Solar Eclipse Task Force

History:  In 2014 the AAS Council approved the formation of the AAS Solar Eclipse Task Force (SETF) to help coordinate national preparations for the “Great American Solar Eclipse” of 21 August 2017. The task force was chaired by Shadia Habbal (University of Hawaii) and Angela Speck (then University of Missouri) and included more than a dozen other professional and amateur astronomers, formal and informal educators, eclipse chasers, science writers, and outreach specialists.

Members: Three Vice-Presidents, and the Executive Officer. The President is ex officio.

Term: One year, June to June, from the close of one Annual Members' Meeting to the close of the next Annual Members' Meeting.

Chair: AAS Senior Vice-President.

Charge: To function as a think tank, coordinating body, and communication gateway/hub, with responsibilities that include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • Identify and involve appropriate astronomy- and eclipse-related organizations, groups, and individuals, and coordinate their efforts to maximize reach/impact and minimize redundancy;
  • Collect existing ideas and generate new ones for eclipse-related education, public outreach, and public engagement, as well as for eclipse-related citizen-science projects;
  • Support/encourage frequent and effective communication and idea sharing among stakeholders;
  • Support/encourage the creation and widespread distribution of good/reliable information about partial, annular, and total solar eclipses, especially how to experience and record them safely;
  • Support/encourage the creation and widespread distribution of good/reliable information about weather prospects, eclipse circumstances, logistics, and other factors relevant to choosing a site from which to view an eclipse;
  • Support/encourage the debunking and quashing of bad/unreliable (mis)information;
  • Work with solar-filter manufacturers, resellers, and online marketplaces to ensure that the public has access to eclipse viewers that meet ISO standards and to instructions for their safe use, and to thwart the sale of filters that do not meet such standards, as occurred in 2017;
  • Enlist the cooperation and assistance/support of the medical and optometric communities;
  • Enlist the cooperation and assistance of the media and broadcast meteorologists, formal and informal educators, artists, musicians, and other messengers/communicators;
  • Enlist the cooperation and assistance of local, state, and federal government officials as well as school administrators and transportation and emergency-management professionals;
  • Enlist the cooperation and assistance of the corporate sector, including (but not limited to) astronomy-related businesses and industries;
  • Encourage as many people as possible to get themselves into the paths of annularity on 14 October 2023 and/or into the path of totality on 8 April 2024.

Committee Co-Chairs

Angela Speck

Co-Chair

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Claire Raftery

Co-Chair

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Project Manager

Richard Tresch Fienberg

Project Manager

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Committee Members

Tyler E. Nordgren

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Andrew Fraknoi

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Dennis L. Schatz

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Pamela L. Gay

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Jay M. Pasachoff

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

IAU Liaison

Henry D. Winter, III

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Laura Peticolas

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Kelly Clark

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

AAS Staff Liaison

Vivian White

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

ASP Liaison

Mario E. Motta

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Alexander Young

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Michael Zeiler

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Bob Baer

Term: Jun 2021 – Jun 2024

Diana Hannikainen

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Michael E. Bakich

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Kate Russo

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Laura Radow

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

Randy Attwood

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

RASC Liaison

Gloria Delgado Inglada

Term: Nov 2020 – Apr 2024

UNAM Liaison