CLEVELAND — Human eyes are not the only things that will need protected for the total solar eclipse. Electronic and other devices need protection as well.

What You Need To Know

  • Cameras, smartphones and telescopes need a special lens for protection when looking at the solar eclipse 

  • The devices can be purchased online but must be ISO regulated

  • The Great Lakes Science Center will have protective lenses available for viewers 

“One of the things we want to remind people of is just like they need to protect their eyes. They’ll want to protect their equipment,” said JonDarr Bradshaw with the Great Lakes Science Center.

Bradshaw said anything that has a lens is going to need a special filter.

“Without a filter you can permanently damage your cellphone, or your camera so you want to make sure that you’re protecting it,” Bradshaw said. “Professional photographers use special filters, astronomers use special filters as well so that they don’t damage their equipment, just like you might damage your eyes.” 

There are multiple options when it comes to finding those filters and what capabilities they have, but buyers should make sure anything purchased online is labeled as ISO regulated.

One Northeast Ohio company has presented a product that essentially takes care of two issues at once.

“This is Safeshot,” said Jordan Katz, owner of Grafix Plastics, as he held up the device. “It’s a double function. It allows you to use this window to look through this window at the eclipse safely with your eyes and then it has this window which is optimized for protecting your smartphone and allowing your smartphone to image during the eclipse.”

Katz said people should think of their smartphone sensors just like they think of their eyes.

“That the longer the sensor is exposed to the light rays of the sun, the more chance it has getting damaged,” Katz said. “And so there are all kinds of effects that can happen like burning, or speckling, or other things.”

As for protecting telescopes, Bradshaw said the same theory applies.

“It has the same type of material that you find here in the glasses but this is specifically fitted to fit over the end of our telescope,” Bradshaw said.