Fred Espenak is a retired
. He worked at the Goddard Space Flight Center
. He is best known for his work on eclipse
He became interested in astronomy when he was 7–8 years old, and had his first telescope when he was around 9–10 years old.
Espenak earned a bachelor's degree in physics from Wagner College
, Staten Island
, where he worked in the planetarium
. His master's degree is from the University of Toledo
, based on studies he did at Kitt Peak Observatory
of eruptive and flare stars among red dwarf
He was employed at Goddard Space Flight Center
, where he used infrared spectrometer
s to measure the atmosphere of planets in the Solar System
He provided NASA
's eclipse bulletins since 1978. He is the author of several canonical works on eclipse predictions, such as the ''Fifty Year Canon of Solar Eclipses: 1986–2035'' and ''Fifty Year Canon of Lunar Eclipses: 1986–2035'',
both of which are standard references on eclipses.
The first eclipse he saw was the solar eclipse of March 7, 1970
, which sparked his interest in eclipses,
and he has since seen over 20 eclipses.
Together with Jean Meeus
, he published the ''Five Millennium Canon of Solar Eclipses'' in 2006, which covers all types of solar eclipses (partial, total, annular, or hybrid) from 2000 BCE to AD 3000,
and the ''Five Millennium Canon of Lunar Eclipses'' in 2009, which lists all lunar eclipses (penumbral, partial, or total) in that time span.
Later, he published the more compact ''Thousand Year Canon of Lunar Eclipses 1501 to 2500'',
the ''Thousand Year Canon of Solar Eclipses 1501 to 2500'',
and the ''21st Century Canon of Solar Eclipses''.
He is also a co-author (with Mark Littmann
and Ken Willcoxof
) of ''Totality: Eclipses of the Sun''.
He was the co-investigator of an atmospheric experiment flown on Space Shuttle Discovery
He is also known as "Mr. Eclipse."
He gives public lectures on eclipses and astrophotophy. Astronomical photographs taken by Espenak have been published in ''National Geographic
'', ''New Scientist
'', and ' magazines.
He met Patricia Totten while in India in 1995. They married in 2006.
[Joyce Lee and Spencer Bakalar]
“He Met His True Love While Chasing Eclipses. Now They Chase Them Together”
“Time”, August 17, 2017.
He retired in 2009.
'' was named in his honor in 2003.
Category:Goddard Space Flight Center
Category:People from Staten Island
Category:Wagner College alumni
Category:University of Toledo alumni
Category:Scientists from New York (state)
Category:Year of birth missing (living people)