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  • Fred Espenak

Country: United States (US) email:

Fred Espenak is an astrophysicist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, where he uses infrared spectrometers to probe the atmospheres of the planets. This work has frequently taken him to the world's highest observatories atop Hawaii's Mauna Kea.Espenak is perhaps best known for his predictions of eclipses. His two books, "Fifty Year Canon of Solar Eclipses: 1986 - 2035" and "Fifty Year Canon of Lunar Eclipses: 1986 - 2035" have become standard references on the subject. Espenak also publishes special NASA bulletins for each major solar eclipse that provide detailed predictions and maps. He is co-author of the popular book "Totality: Eclipses of the Sun" with Mark Littmann and Ken Willcox. Espenak's interest in eclipses was first sparked after witnessing the total solar eclipse of March 1970. Since then, he has participated in over twenty eclipse expeditions around the world and has made predictions on thousands of eclipses. With a life-long passion for photographing the night skies, Espenak's astronomical photographs have appeared in both national and international publications (e.g., National Geographic, Newsweek, Nature, New Scientist, Ciel Et Espace), and he has lectured extensively to the general public on the Sun, eclipses and photography. He is the webmaster of NASA's official eclipse web site as well a personal web site on eclipse photography. In 2003, the International Astronomical Union honored Espenak by naming asteroid 14120 after him.