There is a solar eclipse coming Monday night, and you can watch the show live, online, right here.
The astronomy website Slooh.com will broadcast live video of the partial eclipse from a telescope set up in Australia. The show starts at 11 p.m. PDT. If you have any questions about this eclipse, or eclipses in general, you can ask them during the show on Twitter using the hashtag #Slooh.
This eclipse will not be visible from Los Angeles or anywhere in the United States. In fact, the full eclipse will not be visible to anyone on our planet because it can be seen only from a small, inaccessible part of Antarctica.
If you could go there, you would see an amazing sky show (with your dark tinted safety glasses on, of course).
The moon's shadow would cover most but not all of the sun, leaving a round, lopsided halo of sunlight called an annulus or "ring of fire." It is kind of like what happens when you put a penny on top of a nickel.
But tonight we will have to be satisfied with viewing a partial eclipse -- when the moon will cover a smaller portion of the sun -- as seen from Australia on our computers or tablets or phones.
And even though we won't see it, we will know intellectually what is visible from that barren part of Antarctica.
As Slooh astronomer Bob Berman put it, "When Slooh brings its live feeds from Australia, and we watch in real time as the inky black hemisphere of the moon partially obscures the Sun, the greatest thrill might be an awareness of what's occurring -- unseen by any human -- in a tiny region of Antarctica."
And happy virtual sky watching!
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