LOCAL NEWS

Utah cadet teens teaming up with NASA to collect data during solar eclipse

Oct 13, 2023, 11:16 AM | Updated: 11:35 am

WEST JORDAN —  While many Utahns have plans to trek to the central and southern part of the state to catch the annular solar eclipse Saturday, a group of Utah cadet teens won’t just be looking up at the sky– they’ll be helping the future of aerospace and science.

On Thursday evening, the Civil Air Patrol Phoenix Cadet Squadron gathered at the Utah National Guard building in West Jordan for a practice run of sorts.

The sky may have already been too dark to see, but the mission was crystal clear.

“We are actually training for the solar eclipse on Saturday,” explained Cadet Airman First Class Danielle Seaman.

She stood outside in the parking lot, communicating to other members of her team via radio.

Inside, the other half of her squadron was testing out eclipse glasses and weather instruments.

Airman Andrew Johnson held up a device that measures wind. He blew into it to test it out.

“This is meters per second,” he said, looking down at the red palm-sized instrument.

Johnson, Seaman, and everyone else will be recording wind, temperature, and other weather stats during the eclipse.

“We’ll be recording the effects of the sun and the solar flares during the eclipse,” he explained. They will be testing to see how those flares affect weather and radio communication. They’ll be taking measurements before, during, and after the eclipse.

Airman Andrew Johnson, far left, stands with his squadron as they test weather instruments and hold recording sheets ahead of Saturday’s eclipse (KSL TV)

The data isn’t just for fun, it’ll actually be put to real scientific use.

“We’re working with NASA, and that’s super cool to be doing,” Johnson said.

Half of the squadron will reconvene at the Utah National Guard building in West Jordan Saturday, while the others will head down to Snow College in Richfield. They’ll meet up with other Civil Air Patrol cadets from five states to conduct that research.

The squadron explained that NASA will use the data this team and 180 others across the country collect as part of the Globe Observer Project.

While some of the data they collect is very specialized, the squadron said the general public can join in and gather basic measurements to report back to NASA as part of the citizen science project.

The results are expected to be released in 2024.

For Seaman, seeing the ‘ring of fire’ will be awesome in and of itself.

“People have to travel to come out here to see that,” she said. “We don’t, so that’s very cool.”

And to be on a mission like this, will give her an even cooler way to experience the eclipse.

“We’re like younger kids working with NASA and stuff, so that’s a pretty, pretty big thing,” she said. “It’s very exciting, too, especially when we all like aerospace and stuff. And so, it’s really fun to work with a big corporation like that.”

KSL 5 TV Live

Local News

Follow @KSL5TVLike us on Facebook...

Eliza Pace

Jury asks judge about missing instruction on murder charge for Chad Daybell

There was some confusion the Ada County Courthouse this morning when the jury in the murder trial of Chad Daybell noticed critical instructions were missing. 

7 minutes ago

(Stuart Johnson, KSL TV)...

Josh Ellis

Pickup truck crashes into Provo duplex

Police are asking drivers to avoid the area of 900 East and 200 North in Provo after a truck crashed into a home Thursday morning.

1 hour ago

...

Kyle Ireland

Miller Sports + Entertainment releases renderings for Daybreak field ballpark

Miller Sports + Entertainment unveiled renderings for the new home of the Salt Lake Bees in South Jordan, Daybreak Field.

3 hours ago

(Janna-Lee Holland, Provo Police Department)...

Josh Ellis

Man injured after SUV crashes into Provo car dealership

A 28-year-old man was seriously injured after police say he crashed his SUV into the lot of a car dealership in north Provo.

5 hours ago

Police vehicles at the scene where a teenager was killed in a Mountain View Corridor crash after ru...

Josh Ellis and Mary Culbertson, KSL TV

Teen dead in Mountain View Corridor crash after running red light, police say

A teenager was killed in a crash on Mountain View Corridor early Thursday morning after running a red light, police say.

7 hours ago

Credit cards...

Matt Gephardt

Household debt reaches record high but inflation is masking debt progress

Personal finance experts say American debt has never been higher, but considering the circumstances, it could be much worse.

14 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Electrician repairing ceiling fan with lamps indoors...

Lighting Design

Stay cool this summer with ceiling fans

When used correctly, ceiling fans help circulate cool and warm air. They can also help you save on utilities.

Side view at diverse group of children sitting in row at school classroom and using laptops...

PC Laptops

5 Internet Safety Tips for Kids

Read these tips about internet safety for kids so that your children can use this tool for learning and discovery in positive ways.

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why Printer Security Should Be Top of Mind for Your Business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

Utah cadet teens teaming up with NASA to collect data during solar eclipse