Solar Eclipse 2017: Show’s over, now what to do with the special glasses

The run on the special eclipse-viewing glasses is done, so what do you do with the hoarded pairs of the cardboard and plastic specs that will be sitting around and collecting dust after Monday’s celestial show?

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You could do as many probably did, toss them. Or you can keep them as a scrapbook addition or memento. 

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One thing you may not want to do, is stash them away for the next solar eclipse in 2024. That’s because some glasses may be good for about three years, and that’s if you don’t throw them in to the junk drawer where they could be subject to scratches, rendering them dangerous to wear during the next eclipse, Staten Island Live reported.

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NASA said that guidance is outdated, adding that glasses that meet the ISO 12312-2 safety standard should be good indefinitely, according to NASA.

To see if your glasses meet the standards, click here.

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Donations are an option, too. Astronomers Without Borders is looking to collect the glasses that were passed out and sold for Monday’s eclipse and redistribute them in South American and Asian schools in 2019 when another solar eclipse will happen in about two years.

A similar program occurred in 2013 to send glasses to west and central Africa. Organizers collected 13,700 glasses that were distributed to schools in eight countries, Smithsonian Magazine reported

Other groups say check with schools or rec programs to see if they can use the glasses for astronomy activities, Time reported.

>>Solar Eclipse 2017 in photos

A final option is to recycle them. Take out the lenses and recycle the cardboard frames. As for the lenses, contact a local camera shop to see if they will take them to recycle with camera film, USA Today reported.

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