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Solar Eclipse Excitement

RING OF FIRE A total solar eclipse appears in Argentina on December 14, 2020. RONALDO SCHEMIDT—AFP/GETTY IMAGES

Parts of the United States are preparing for quite the astrological event. On April 8, a total solar eclipse will be visible in 15 states. The other continental states will be able to see a partial solar eclipse.

A solar eclipse happens when the moon passes in front of the sun, and the moon’s shadow falls on part of Earth. This happens rarely, because the moon’s orbit is rarely aligned with the sun and Earth.

April’s eclipse is special because it’s total. This means the moon will completely cover the sun. Places in the moon’s shadow will experience sudden darkness in the middle of the day. They’ll see a ring of fire, or the outline of the sun behind the moon. After April 8, a total eclipse visible in the United States won’t happen again until 2044.