Eager skywatchers across the globe were gifted a spectacularThursday morning — and they didn’t pass up the opportunity to document it. Millions of people around the world marveled at the sight, which appeared as a glowing “ring of fire” in the night sky.
Astrophotographers pulled out all the stops to capture stunning images of the celestial phenomenon, which was fully visible in parts of Canada, Greenland, the Arctic Ocean and Siberia, and partially visible for much of the rest of northeastern North America, Greenland, northern Europe and northern Asia.
A total solar eclipse occurs when the moon passes directly between the Earth and the sun, completely blocking the sun’s light. During an annular solar eclipse, the moon does not completely cover the sun as it passes, leaving some sunlight visible.
Because the moon appears smaller under these circumstances, it cannot fully block out the sun, forming what’s called a “ring of fire” or “ring of light.”
This was just one of two solar eclipses this year. A total solar eclipse will be visible on December 4.