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Solar eclipse 2017: How you can view the phenomenon safely

See the phenomenon safely...

A solar eclipse will be visible today just before sunset as the moon moves in to make the sun ‘disappear’.

Dubbed the Great American Eclipse, the phenomenon will see the Sun, the Moon and the Earth become perfectly aligned for an once-in-a-lifetime event which will briefly cast darkness across our planet’s surface.

A partial eclipse (where the moon covers only part of the sun) will be visible across the UK today with the all-important mid-point happening at different times across the country.

Wherever you are viewing the stunning event later today, remember to protect your eyes properly from the sun.

Here is how you can view the eclipse safely and when you can see it across the UK today…

How can I protect my eyes during the solar eclipse?

First and foremost, you should never stare directly at the sun. This still applies for total/partial eclipses.

This is simply because the radiation emitted from the sun is so strong it may cause a solar burn of the retina.

Here are some examples of how you can view the total/partial eclipse safely and not cause yourself any harm:

  •           Avoid staring directly at the sun, even if you are wearing sunglasses – they are not strong enough to provide enough protection for your eyes.
  •           Use ‘eclipse glasses’ if you wish to view the eclipse directly. (Make sure they bear the CE logo to avoid counterfeits).
  •           Do not view the eclipse via a camera, phone camera, telescope or binoculars – this still puts you at risk of damage.
  •           Use a pinhole projector, you can watch a video on how to set yours up here. 
  •           Alternatively, you can watch the event on TV or online, NASA will be streaming live here.


Where can I see the eclipse in the UK?

For us living in the UK we will only be treated to a partial eclipse, unlike our American chums who will witness a full eclipse.

Regardless, this is still a phenomenon worth watching and will be visible in parts of Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland today.

And of course, make sure your eyes are protected properly and you watch the event in a safe, unobstructed area.

Here is when the event is due to start in some key locations across the UK today (end time in brackets)…

Belfast – 19:37pm (20:23pm)

Brighton – 19:40pm (20:29pm)

Cardiff – 19:41pm (20:34pm)

Dublin – 19:38pm (20:27pm)

Edinburgh – 19:38pm (20:18pm)

Glasgow – 19:37pm (20:19pm)

London – 19:40pm (20:28pm)

Manchester – 19:39pm (20:24pm)

Norwich – 19:40pm (20:24pm)

Plymouth – 19:40pm (20:33pm)

Wherever you view the stunning spectacle later today, remember to enjoy it - they don’t happen that often!