Embark on the eclipse adventure.

February 28, 2024


  • Documenting a total solar eclipse in 1900, MIT Technology Review captures the thrill of the cosmic event.
  • In 2024, NASA’s program manager anticipates the unique experience of the upcoming solar eclipse.

In 1900, MIT’s first dean chronicled an expedition to Washington to capture a total solar eclipse for Technology Review. The team traveled with a science fair’s worth of instruments, highlighting the rugged scientific exploration of the time. Today, NASA operates a fleet of spacecraft to study the sun, but total solar eclipses still offer rare insight into the sun’s phenomena.

The eclipse in 1900 lasted 85 seconds, captivating observers with the extinguished sun and the streams of light against a dark blue sky. Nearly 125 years later, the Fitzpatrick Hotel still stands, welcoming visitors to witness the partial eclipse on April 8, 2024.

Journey to the Eclipse

125 years ago, MIT Technology Review documented a total solar eclipse, capturing the essence of the cosmic event. Alfred E. Burton, MIT’s first dean, led an expedition to Washington in 1900 to record the eclipse, marveling at the modern amenities of the Hotel Fitzpatrick. The team set up in a nearby cotton field, equipped with a range of instruments for observation.

Today, NASA’s program manager, Kelly Korreck, anticipates the upcoming 2024 solar eclipse, highlighting the full-body experience of the event. While NASA’s advanced technology enables in-depth study of the sun, total solar eclipses still offer unique insights into coronal discharges and solar winds.

The eclipse in 1900 left observers mesmerized with the brief darkness and the streams of light against the sky. The upcoming partial eclipse on April 8, 2024, provides a spectacular reminder of the cosmic phenomena that continue to captivate scientists and enthusiasts alike.