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See what the solar eclipse looked like from space

This week’s total solar eclipse wowed people across Northern America, but it wasn’t only here on Earth that this special cosmic phenomenon was enjoyed. The astronauts on board the International Space Station (ISS) also caught a stunning glimpse of the eclipse, and NASA has shared some images showing what a space-eye view of an eclipse looks like.

The Moon’s shadow, or umbra, on Earth was visible from the space station as it orbited into the path of the solar eclipse over southeastern Canada.
The moon’s shadow, or umbra, on earth was visible from the International Space Station as it orbited into the path of the solar eclipse over southeastern Canada on April 8, 2024. NASA

The first image shows the view from the ISS as the totality passed over southeast Canada from New York into Newfoundland, and is remarkable in how it shows the edges of the totality. The totality, or the area in which the sun’s light is fully blocked by the moon, is the region of shadow that passed from Mexico, through the U.S., and up into Canada over the course of April 8.

This was observed from space by the current crew of the ISS, including NASA flight engineers Matthew Dominick and Jeanette Epps who saw the view from the station’s cupola, or window. The station experienced its own partial eclipse, passing through a totality of 90% during its orbit around the planet. The astronauts couldn’t observe the eclipse directly as the view was only possible from one segment of the station which, NASA said, “may not have been accessible due to cargo constraints.” But they could observe the effects on the planet below.

The Moon’s shadow, or umbra, is pictured from the space station as it orbited into the path of the solar eclipse on April 8, 2024.
The moon’s shadow, or umbra, is pictured from the space station as it orbited into the path of the solar eclipse on April 8, 2024. NASA

Another image shows the view as the station was coming up on the area of totality, and this one gives a great feel of how large the totality was and how strange it appears when a big chunk of the Earth is plunged into darkness during the daytime.

The Moon's shadow, or umbra, is pictured covering portions of the Canadian provinces of Quebec and New Brunswick and the American state of Maine in this photograph from the International Space Station as it soared into the solar eclipse from 261 miles above.
The moon’s shadow, or umbra, is pictured covering portions of the Canadian provinces of Quebec and New Brunswick and the American state of Maine in this photograph taken from the International Space Station as it soared into the solar eclipse from 261 miles above on April 8, 2024. NASA

NASA also coordinated many viewings of the eclipse from the ground, and has compiled some of the most striking images for you to peruse. One great image shows a composite of the eclipse as it progressed, captured from Dallas.

This composite image of multiple exposures shows the progression of a total solar eclipse in Dallas on April 8, 2024.
This composite image of multiple exposures shows the progression of a total solar eclipse in Dallas on April 8, 2024. NASA/Keegan Barber

For many more images and even some fun time lapses showing the arrival of darkness over Dallas, you can head to NASA’s website.

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Georgina Torbet
Georgina is the Digital Trends space writer, covering human space exploration, planetary science, and cosmology. She…
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