SCIENCE

The Solar Eclipse Of 2015 Will Be Visible Only In Europe, But That Doesn't Mean We All Can't Join In The Fun

03/18/2015 08:33 am ET | Updated Mar 18, 2015

Skywatchers, get ready for a big treat (and then a quick nap).

On Friday, a rare total solar eclipse will temporarily blot out the sun in Europe. The eclipse will be the continent's darkest since 1999, with reductions in sunlight varying from 85 percent in London to a whopping 98 percent in northern Scotland.

This NASA animation shows the path and size of the eclipse's shadow.

The eclipse's northern trajectory means people in other parts of the world won't be able to witness it in person. But fear not: the Slooh Community Observatory will live-stream the eclipse starting at 4:30 a.m. EDT (see above). The Virtual Telescope Project will have live coverage beginning at 4 a.m. EDT.

What NASA calls "the instant of greatest eclipse" will come at 5:45 a.m. on the East Coast of the U.S. and 2:45 a.m. on the West Coast (or 9:45 UTC).

Even if you're not a devoted umbraphile (eclipse lover), you might want to drag yourself out of bed and have a look at your computer screen. Universe Today reports this is the first total solar eclipse to coincide with the vernal equinox, which marks the first day of spring, since March 20, 1662.

Those who are lucky enough to witness the eclipse in person should use proper eye protection or construct a simple solar eclipse viewer.

If you snap a great photo of the eclipse, we want to see it! Share your photos using #HuffPostEclipse. We'll be collecting user photos from all over, and yours may be featured on HuffPost or its social media channels.

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