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Will looking at an annular eclipse reflection through a bowl of water damage your sight? I already tried viewing its reflection through a bowl of water.

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    $\begingroup$ There are two experiments you can do with your eyes. Left and right. Don't mess with it; there are a number of safe ways to observe an eclipse. $\endgroup$
    – ProfRob
    Jun 15, 2021 at 7:06
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    $\begingroup$ Is there a chance that the atmosphere will reduce the brightness enough? Yes. Would I count on it? No. Why not just get eclipse glasses and be done with it? That is the only scientifically studied method. $\endgroup$ May 16, 2023 at 13:30

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You are better off with eclipse glasses as noted in the comments. Beware that a partially eclipsed Sun is more dangerous to look at than either the full Sun (which is itself not such a good idea) or a totally eclipsed Sun, and "partially eclipsed" also includes an annular eclipse.

What happens is your eyes try to adjust to the changing brightness of the background; as the Sun becomes more covered by the Moon and the ambient darkens, your pupils open up to admit more light. Technically you don't even need an eclipse to see this; the same adjustment causes shadows to appear less dark on days when the Sun is shining hazily through high clouds than when the sky is perfectly clear. With the clouds there is no problem because they dim the entire solar disk, but with a partial solar eclipse the un-eclipsed part of the Sun is still delivering full intensity to your opened pupils. Having the pupils opened then magnifies the harmful effects of looking at the bright and UV-containing light.

Play it safe. They are called "eclipse glasses", not merely "total eclipse glasses". Get and use them.

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It's unclear what is the reflection surface in your case.

Water does not absorb ultraviolet light but only scatters this light. Glass absorbs only a portion of the ultraviolet light spectrum. After a glass bowl of water, you still get energetic, invisible UV (most likely UV-A) into your eyes. Whether it's enough to damage the eyesight is outside of my expertise, but frankly, I wouldn't look through the bowl with water. As for the reflection off the surface of water, it's even worse, as the surface reflects the falling light of wavelengths down to about 100 nm; so don't do it.

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