Solar Eclipse first in 18 years in the US on May 20th

nnular solar eclipse first in 18 years in continental United States on May 20

Photo from January 15, 2000 showing a combination of three separate photographs, the various stages of an annular solar eclipse seen over Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka. (Eranga Jayawardena - AP)
Fire up your flux capacitors! It’s time for an annular solar eclipse that’s going back to the future.
The moon crosses in front of the sun, handing sky gazers an annular eclipse that starts Monday and ends on the previous Sunday, according to NASA and noted eclipse expert Fred Espenak. This will be the first solar eclipse visible in 18 years in the contiguous 48 states.
What? The eclipse starts on Monday and ends the previous Sunday? Yes, indeed.
Turning back the clock
First, the other side of the world will enjoy the solar eclipse – an eclipse just a smidgen shy of totality – that begins on Monday, May 21 in eastern China, runs through Japan, curves toward the Aleutian Islands, crosses the International Date Line, and then ends in the evening, just before sunset, on Sunday, May 20 in the western and southwestern United States - in a swath (about 185 miles wide) from Medford Oregon to Lubbock, Texas.
Those outside of this narrow path – in the western and Midwestern United States – will see a partial eclipse at sunset.
The eastern United States – including Washington, D.C. – won’t be able to see it.
Science@NASA has created a short, amazing video that explains the celestial mechanics of this eclipse. It is available on YouTube, or watch below:
The U.S. path

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