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tv   Interview with Donald Liebenberg on the Solar Eclipse  CSPAN  August 17, 2017 8:33pm-8:40pm EDT

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returned tomorrow on c-span2 with a focus on presidential history. we'll hear from former adviser to president clinton, suddenly blumenthal, political signs professor tony smith on why will son matters and more. join it as 8:00 p.m. eastern. right here on c-span2. >> on monday, total solar eclipse will be visible from coast to coast over the u.s. for the first time in 199 years. we spoke to an astronomer to find out what to expect. >> donald lieb'berg from clemson, university, in south carolina, enjoining us now. what should be we watching on monday, the total solar eclipse, the 27th one he has observed in perfect. by far the most of anyone alive today. for the viewers who will be witnessing this total solar
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eclipse for the first tike what your favorite moment of the total solar eclipse and what are you looking forward to on monday? >> well, what happens as the first light of the sun is taken out by the moon, is that the air begins to cool, and the sky begins to darken, and what happens when they -- the second contact occurs, or the onset of totality, i am always impressed because from early times, people have been able to make calculations predicting where and when this solar eclipse will occur. and so it's remarkable that mathematic and the geography now fit together in such a way that the precise spot on the earth where you can see the eclipse is known well in advance. so, that is impressive.
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when the corona shows up, that's a beautiful sight, white blue white against a dark background, and it's unlike anything that people have seen before. national phenomenon of spectacular proportions. >> what are you collecting when you observe this type of phenomenon? >> well, we're looking to understand the energy input into the corona. the surface of the sun is 5600 degrees kelvin, and the interior of the sun where the heat is generated in nuclear process, you expect then that from thermodynamics that heat flows from hot to cold and beyond the -- it would cool off still more. that doesn't happen. we see crono spire is 3,000 degrees and the corona is
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a million degrees and more, so our question is, how does that happen? and the answer is being known in various ways now because we are dealing with a plasma, which is the force speed of matter. we know about gasses and liquids and solids, but plasmas are where ion atoms have lost elooktrons and become charged and the elooktrons are nearby but not connected. so you have this plasma material, and plasma is pretty well controlled by magnetic fields, and so the local fields on the sun shape the corona, the whitelight corona, the electrons, and the magnetic field shaped the ions and i'm looking at the line from the ions. >> why is it important to know about plasma? what can we do with that information?
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>> well, one of the things observed in 1859 was a white light flair on the surface of the sun. these are very infrequent but they have been seen since then, but the solar wind as we know it now takes about four days to reach from the sun to the earth, and this white light flare instituted what we now noes a cor reasonnal mass ejection cor reasonnal mavs ejection and that took 14 hours to reach the earth. what happened in the london area and was to produce a bright asia aurora which extended to the equator and in london it melted telegraph wires, shocked the people at the telegraph operators and put sparks flying off of metal rugs.
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very significant effect. and more recently in july of 19 -- 2012, such a double coronal mass ejection occurred and that came interest the earth's orbit at the place where the earth had been a week earlier, and if we had been in that spot when this coronal mass eviction hit it would have killed the astronauts onboard the spacecraft, disabled most of the satellites, and it would have wreak havoc with the electrical grid system in this country and around the world. so, we would like to understand the mechanism for the occurrence of these storms. smaller storms appear every day and the heat offering the cor rope na is not completely debted
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but has to do with, we believe, the magnetic waves and fields that are available to -- from active lesions on the sun. >> well, we thank you for your time and sharing your thoughts with us this morning. appreciate it. >> you're welcome. >> we'll have coverage all day monday, beginning at 7:00 a.m. with washington journal live from the flight center in maryland, and then at noon, we'll have a simulcast with nasa tv on c-span. now we return to our focus on manufacturing and labor with andy pudzer, was president trump's first nominee for labor secretary before withdrawing his name. his book it is titled "job creation: how it really works and why government doesn't understand it."

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