There will be a solar eclipse soon at my area... naturally I want to watch this with my son.

Is it safe for us to watch the solar eclipse's reflection in the water? There is a swimming pool near my house and I plan to watch it there.. is it safe to do so?

I remember vividly doing this with my dad when I was little, but some website says we are not supposed to watch it in a bucket of water..

So is it ok to watch it in the water?

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ No. There will be a very brief period where is could potnentially be safe, but in order to watch for that moment you would need to watch the reflection while it is damagingly bright. There are better low-tech methods available. But good on you for planning this event with your son! I was in my mid-20s when I brought my dad along to see our first eclipse together. It was special even then. :) $\endgroup$
    – David H
    Mar 1, 2016 at 11:37
  • $\begingroup$ Also, I think even in a pool the image of the Sun will be so distorted that it will kind of ruin the experience. I have watched Solar eclipses through a CD without damaging my eyes, but I won't recommend this method to others, as I don't really know about the potential hazards. NASA seems to think it's okay, though, as long as the CD isn't transparent, but other sites discourages this. $\endgroup$
    – pela
    Mar 1, 2016 at 12:52
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @pela Thanks for the CD suggestion.. I have a few CDs here that fit the description on NASA site.. I will use it for quick viewing as a last resort if I could not find proper solar filters. $\endgroup$ Mar 3, 2016 at 0:52

1 Answer 1


If it's not safe to look at the sun's reflection in the water normally then it's no safer during an eclipse because even if 1% of the sun is showing this is more than enough light to seriously damage your eyes. The best way to view the sun, if you haven't ordered your eclipse glasses yet, is to poke a hole in a piece of paper and project an image of the sun onto another, like so:

Enter image description here

There are instructions on how to do this here on the JPL website.

  • $\begingroup$ Thanks.. after pondering about it a little bit I think I will go for the binocular option.. something like this will do right? lelong.com.my/… it is just 10 bucks.. I will tape this to a tripod and project it to a paper on the ground.. should make for much better image right? $\endgroup$ Mar 2, 2016 at 5:11
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @RosdiKasim Yeah that will work, you'll get two images instead of one but that doesn't matter. If you can get them to focus on the paper well then you should see a great image. $\endgroup$
    – Dean
    Mar 2, 2016 at 13:06
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I just want to add that people are so focused on observing the eclipsing disk that they miss the best part of the experience. If in a region of totality, you want to observe your environment on the ground. The temperature drops about 10 degrees as a shadow races across the ground toward you at a thousand miles an hour. All of the animals and plants act as if it were night time (it gets quiet, crickets chirp, plants recede, etc.) It is cool to see the corona though! $\endgroup$ Aug 22, 2017 at 0:14

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .