Space station astronaut sees solar eclipse shadow on Earth

The solar lamp illuminated on a nightstand


Over the weekend, millions of Americans crowded into the narrow celestial interstate from OR to SC known as the "path of totality", where a total solar eclipse appeared briefly on Monday. People in the 14 states that lay in the coast-to-coast, 70-mile-wide path of totality will experience about two minutes of darkness in the middle of the day.

But for those who are not within the path of totality, which extends from OR to SC, the eclipse will be partial, meaning you'll still be exposed to sunlight and need to take protective measures.

It's one of the most talked about astronomical events of the century-a total solar eclipse.

Find out more about when your location will see the eclipse best here. Use only approved devices (eclipse glasses, pinhole camera, etc.) for viewing the eclipse.

The rest of North America was treated to a partial eclipse, as were Central American and the top of South America. A lunar eclipse, by contrast, occurs when the Earth moves between the Sun and the Moon.

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It's vital you do not look directly at the sun without protective solar eclipse glasses, but seeing the ground blanketed in tiny little moons should be a magical sight in its own right.

You should never look directly at a partial solar eclipse, since the sun is still visible and can damage your eyes. We wanted to cover the total eclipse in person, but we didn't want to drive.

The first solar eclipse happened in the beginning of the year on February 26, 2017. The only time it is safe to look directly at the Sun is when the Moon has covered it completely. For most countries in Northwestern Europe, including the UK, France, Germany, Belgium, Spain, and Portugal, the Sun will set before the eclipse has had time to finish.

Narrow corridor in United States experiences full eclipse while rest of N. and S. America treated to partial eclipse.

Researchers say the eclipse is important because it will enable astronomers to study the outer realm of the Sun, known as the corona.

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