On Friday March 20, there was a solar eclipse in parts of our globe. I live in Ramsel, Belgium. On that location, the sun was blocked for 80%.

I captured the event.

picture from greatamericaneclipse.com, annotated by me.


Although the sky was cloudy that day, the sun was clearly visible from the backdoor of my house.

I took a series of photos during the event. And (attention – geek subject following) I measured the light intensity with an ambient light sensor.
The photo below shows the progress of the eclipse from start to end. I have taken them with a very humble digital camera: Canon PowerShot A800.

unedited photos. I just pasted them in series.


From 9:42 AM CET until 11:25 AM, I have sampled the light intensity of the daylight with a Texas Instruments development kit:

I'm using TI's Project0 to collect data, unchanged.

The only hardware needed is a Hercules LaunchPad. It has a light sensor.


Here is the setup, at the back of my garden.

It's just the LaunchPad and the micro-USB cable that's included in the LaunchPad box.

And my PC. And a serial communication terminal (I used putty).


Because of the clouds, the measurements taken by the sensor are rather good. The damping factor of the clouds is a stabilizing factor for this kind of measurements.
In total, I got 677.319 data points. You can see a few peaks in the measurements. That is when the clouds opened up briefly.


I don’t have the tools to measure exact intensity. The measurements are relative. But they do show that the available light decreased dramatically.

The view was also dramatic at times. The action picture below was taken with an iPad during the peak of the action, from the same location in my garden.

The raw capture data is available on simple request.