Baader AstroSolar Visual Safety Film ECO-Size Sheet - 5.5 x 6.1"
- This Baader AstroSolar Safety Film is the smallest size available: ECO-Size sheet, at 5.5" x 6.1" (14 cm x 15.5 cm)
- All AstroSolar Safety Film is thoroughly processed and tested for the utmost safety and quality in observation of the Sun
- Baader's AstroSolar Safety Film is available at a fraction of the cost of the competition
- Views of granulation and faculae are particularly enhanced through the use of Baader's AstroSolar Safety Film
- Safe for viewing the Sun, when applied correctly to your scope
Baader Planetarium's Astro Solar Film makes viewing the Sun safe and fun. The safety film projects white light views of the Sun that are unparalleled to any other solar filters or material out there. Portraying fine solar detail, Baader's Astro Solar Film display penumbral detail, solar granulation, and lighter colored faculae. The film is set against a dark background, free of haze and scatter. Great performance at a great price!
Baader AstroSolar Visual Safety Film size 5.5" x 6.1" presents the Sun in its real color which is neutral white. The competition provides films and glass filters that produce a blurry bluish or reddish/orange/yellow solar image which in turn cuts part of the spectrum. With an orange Sun, it is very hard to see faculae regions which are visible predominantly in the blue wing of the spectrum. Because of AstroSolar's neutral color balance, this allows the use of various color (or interference) filters that allow observers to focus on particular spectral passbands for investigations or different layers within the solar "atmosphere".
In solar observation, eye safety is critical! Baader's AstroSolar is essentially free from pinholes because of the coating on both sides so that the chances of two pinholes overlapping each other is extremely small. While pinholes do appear the ratio is 1 out of 10,000 only, in optical density 2.5! All coatings are inspected continually for consistency and for eye safety. With Baader AstroSolar Visual Safety Film 5.5" x 6.1", enthusiasts will enjoy the Sun's hidden grandeur at a fraction of the cost but will experience high-quality performance in every use.
What About Your Finderscope?
Adding this solar filter to your telescope will adequately filter the light coming through your focuser, but have you considered what you’ll do about your finder scope?
Here are some suggestions for dealing with your finder that will assure you do not damage your eyes (or anyone else’s) by looking at the Sun through your telescope’s unfiltered finder:
- Remove Your Finder. Ditching your finderscope when solar viewing will remove the possibility of someone accidentally looking through it to spot the Sun. Of course, not having a finder makes centering the Sun in your eyepiece more difficult, but with practice, it can be done. Set the mount down so the telescope is pointing in the direction of the Sun. Put the main solar filter on so you can check your progress, and then move the telescope around until it casts a shadow that produces a nice, sharp silhouette of the scope. The OTA will look circular. Now move your telescope up or down with your hand controller, slow motion controls, or very carefully by hand if required while looking through the eyepiece. You will not get a warning when you are close, but you should be able to align with the Sun using this method. Practice ahead of time before any big event, like an eclipse, to make sure you’ve got the process down.
- Filter Your Optical Finder. This solution is not recommended for a reflex or red dot finder since it is too easy to accidentally look around the window. If you have one of these finders we recommend you either remove it or replace it with a dedicated solar finder (see below).
To make your optical finderscope safe for solar viewing you’ll need to buy a piece of Baader Solar Film for Visual Use. This film comes in different size sheets and cuts easily with scissors, allowing you to make your own filter. You can go super low-tech and use a rubber band to hold a piece of the film firmly around the finder or you can get fancy and build your own slip-on solar filter. However you attach the solar film, you need to make sure there are no light leaks at all and that it doesn’t accidentally fall off when you move your telescope around. Any unused film can store flat between two pieces of cardboard and will keep for years. It is nice to have around, just in case of a solar emergency :-)
- Buy a Dedicated Solar Finder. Check out the Tele Vue Sol-Searcher Solar Finder. This special finder can only be used when observing the Sun, but it works very well. The Sol-Searcher is reasonably priced and can be attached to your telescope with Velcro or with #10-32 screws (user supplied).
Finally, we recommend you have a pair of solar glasses on hand when you are setting up your telescope for solar viewing. That way you can put them on whenever you need to check the Sun’s location or when you want to view the Sun without the use of your telescope. We offer standard cardboard solar glasses as well as plastic solar glasses that look very much like normal sunglasses.