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Total Solar Eclipse

A total solar eclipse will pass over North America today, with almost 32 million Americans living in its path. It marks the last total solar eclipse visible in the US for the next 20 years. See here to track the eclipse’s path.

The event happens when the moon passes directly in front of the sun. Since the moon’s orbit is elliptical, its distance from Earth varies, dictating how much of the sun will be covered. A total solar eclipse—where the moon is close enough to entirely block the sun—happens roughly every 18 months but is often only visible from the open ocean or difficult-to-access areas. Over the past century, only 13 total solar eclipses have been visible in the US, the last one being in 2017.  

Millions of Americans are traveling across the US for a chance to see a total solar eclipse. Airbnb rentals have booked up along prime viewing locations, while others will have a chance to see a partial eclipse.

Onlookers are urged to wear eclipse glasses, which are at least 1,000 times darker than sunglasses, to protect their eyesight—an eclipse can disrupt the eye’s instinct to turn from the sun’s rays (look for the symbol ISO 12312-2).

Happy (and safe) eclipse viewing! 

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