Watch a Live Stream of Today's Total Solar Eclipse!

Monday, 21 August 2017 - 9:55AM
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Monday, 21 August 2017 - 9:55AM
Watch a Live Stream of Today's Total Solar Eclipse!
Image credit: Javichu el jefe, Wikimedia Commons
Who's ready for a solar eclipse?

Today, large parts of America will get the rare treat of watching in wonder and awe as the sun is blotted out by the moon. The sky will fall dark, night animals will come out early, bacteria will hopefully die in giant balloons, and then a "false dawn chorus" will sound as birds begin to sing as if it were sunrise all over again.

If you're aiming to watch the eclipse yourself, you'll need some special equipment to do so, or else risk burning your retinas (under no circumstances should you look directly at the sun, even during an eclipse), but as pinhole projectors are a bit of a hassle, there is an alternative way to enjoy the view that will provide a far more detailed look of the eclipse than would be possible from a low-tech solution.

Education group Slooh will be livestreaming the entire eclipse on YouTube, along with coverage from their various events across the country, starting at 11am Eastern Time this morning. This is useful not only for those of us who want the best view for the eclipse, but for audiences in parts of the country, and the world, who aren't in the right location to be able to see the celestial event unfold in the skies above them.



It's worth noting again just how special a total solar eclipse is in the grand scheme of the universe. Planets like Jupiter, Mars, and Saturn regularly see their moons pass in front of their view of the sun, but it's not a spectacle that in any way matches up to what we get on Earth. Our planet is unique in that our moon is unusually large—almost as big as our planet itself. It's because of this that we have tides and, notably, eclipses. It's merely a convenient coincidence that we're at the exact distance from the sun that our moon is the right size to blot out our view, meaning that events like the one we're about to witness are incredibly rare throughout the known galaxy—let alone on planets where photosensitive life forms exist to actually pay attention to it.
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