'Ring of Fire' Eclipse Tonight
Annular solar eclipse visible from western US
By Evann Gastaldo, Newser Staff
Posted May 17, 2012 8:41 AM CDT
Updated May 20, 2012 10:37 AM CDT
An annular solar eclipse is seen formed over the sky of Male, Maldives, Friday, Jan. 15, 2010.   (AP Photo/Sinan Hussain)

(Newser) – For the first time this century, the sun will partially disappear behind the moon over the US tonight, leaving a “ring of fire” around the moon in what is known as an annular eclipse. The solar event will be best viewed from 33 national parks that will experience the full effect, the Christian Science Monitor notes, but more than 100 other parks lay in the path of the eclipse and guests will be able to view at least a partial show. But sorry, East Coast: In the US, the Eastern Seaboard will be completely unable to see the event, which starts at 8:24pm—after sunset.

Many national parks in the west are planning viewing events, but for those who can’t make one, the Guardian helpfully reminds you not to stare directly at the sun, even during an eclipse—and you also need to use a solar filter if you plan to look through binoculars or a telescope. The annular eclipse, which last occurred in 1994, will also be visible from parts of Asia.

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Showing 3 of 17 comments
JoeQ
May 20, 2012 8:22 PM CDT
Cool ... happening right now .. my el cheapo Harbor Freight welding goggles work great! Thank you, China!
Mr_Joshua
May 20, 2012 4:12 PM CDT
I love these "In case you missed it" stories. Well I did miss it Newser, so can we go back to the 17th so I can see the eclipse again. I guess there is no wisdom in re-running, at a later date, stories that predict something will happen TONIGHT. And you can call me..................Mr Joshua
coldwontrise
May 20, 2012 4:08 PM CDT
I'll just leave this here: http://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/sunearth.html?iso=20120521T0138