BFSP 2017 Speakers


Keynote: Dr. Fred Espenak – world renowned eclipse expert


Fred Espenak’s career as a NASA astrophysicist at Goddard Space Flight Center spans more than 30 years. His primary research involves the infrared spectroscopy of planetary atmospheres although he is better known as NASA’s eclipse expert Mr. Eclipse. He is currently a scientist emeritus at Goddard and he maintains NASA’s official eclipse web site ( as well as his personal web site on eclipse photography ( Fred has published numerous books and articles of eclipse predictions including the NASA Eclipse Bulletins series, and he is the co-author of the popular book Totality: Eclipses of the Sun. His magnum opus, the Five Millennium Canon of Solar Eclipses, includes a map of every solar eclipse occurring between 2000 BC and AD 3000.

Since retiring, Espenak has begun a new series of eclipse publications through his company Astropixels Publishing. Among the most recent titles are Thousand Year Canon of Solar Eclipses, Eclipse Bulletin: Total Solar Eclipse of 2017 August 21, and Road Atlas for the Total Solar Eclipse of 2017. He also runs three web sites: 1) (all about eclipse photography), 2) (eclipse predictions for thousands of years), and 3) (astrophotography from Bifrost Astronomical Observatory).

Espenak’s interest in eclipses was first sparked after witnessing a total solar eclipse in 1970. Since then, he has participated in 34 eclipse expeditions around the world including Antarctica. Fred’s eclipse photographs have appeared in both national and international publications, and he has lectured extensively on the Sun, eclipses and photography. In 2003, the International Astronomical Union honored him for his work on eclipses by naming an asteroid Espenak. Fred now lives in rural Arizona, where he spends most clear nights losing sleep and photographing the stars (

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