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Total solar eclipse 2017: how to live stream at home

Steve Albers, Boulder, CO; Dennis DiCicco, Sky and Telescope; Gary Emerson, E. E. Barnard Observatory

On Monday, August 21, the moon will come between the sun and the Earth at just the right moment for a total solar eclipse to occur across the United States. The path of totality is only 70 miles wide, but the rest of the country will see a partial eclipse. Vox has a terrific interactive showing how much you’ll be able to see depending on your zip code.

As several veteran eclipse chasers have told us, a total solar eclipse can be an awe-inspiring, life-changing event. But not everyone can travel to experience totality on Monday.

For those who want to see terrific footage of the rare natural phenomenon from the comfort of their homes, there are some great ways to do that.

NASA offers two options for streaming the big event on Monday

According to the NASA website, “NASA Television will air a four-hour show, Eclipse Across America, with unprecedented live video of the celestial event, along with coverage of activities in parks, libraries, stadiums, festivals and museums across the nation, and on social media.

“The program will feature views from NASA research aircraft, high-altitude balloons, satellites and specially-modified telescopes. It also will include live reports from Charleston, as well as from Salem, Oregon; Idaho Falls, Idaho; Beatrice, Nebraska; Jefferson City, Missouri; Carbondale, Illinois; Hopkinsville, Kentucky; and Clarksville, Tennessee.”

When: 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm Eastern
Ways to watch: Live-stream page, Facebook Live, YouTube, Twitter/Periscope, Twitch TV, Ustream, NASA apps

NASA Edge will have a second program featuring the NASA Heliophysics Education Consortium, Southern Illinois University Carbondale, and Lunt Solar Systems. It will air a four-hour, 30-minute live webcast of the total solar eclipse from an area outside Saluki Stadium.

The program will feature live coverage, scientist interviews, social media chat, educational activities, and telescope feeds.

When: 11:45 am to 4:15 pm Eastern
Ways to Watch: NASA edge, Ustream, Facebook Live, H-Alpha Telescope, Ca-K Telescope, White Light Telescope, Processed Imagery

The San Francisco Exploratorium is also offering several viewing options

Eclipse Day coverage from the exploratorium will feature five different live streams:

  • Video coverage with commentary from Exploratorium and NASA scientists
  • Video coverage with commentary in Spanish
  • A telescope feed from Madras, Oregon
  • A telescope feed from Casper, Wyoming
  • And a telescope feed with “eclipse sonification” produced by Exploratorium staff sound artist and Bay Area composer Wayne Grim in collaboration with the Kronos Quartet

When: Coverage begins at 12:00 pm Eastern
Ways to Watch: All five live streams will be available on the Exploratorium’s website and mobile apps

You can catch the solar eclipse on major TV networks, too

  • ABC: David Muir will host The Great American Eclipse, two hours of live coverage from 12 pm to 2 pm Eastern, checking in with correspondents from across the country.
  • CBS: CBS News will live-stream eclipse coverage beginning at 12 pm Eastern, followed by a CBS Special Report from 1 pm to 3 pm Eastern. The CBS Special Report will also be streamed on CBS News’s Facebook page.
  • CNN: CNN is planning to bring 360-degree, virtual reality coverage to viewers with Oculus and other VR headsets from 1 pm to 3 pm Eastern in partnership with Volvo. The news network will also have special coverage with reporting from Oregon, Missouri, Tennessee, and South Carolina.
  • Fox News Channel: Shep Smith will interrupt Fox News programming from 12 to 4 pm Eastern to give updates on the eclipse with footage from NASA and observatories around the country.
  • NBC: Lester Holt will be hosting special reports with correspondents from Oregon, Illinois, Wyoming, and South Carolina at 1 and 2 pm Eastern on NBC networks.
  • PBS: The PBS science series NOVA is planning its fastest turnaround to date to produce a 90-minute documentary on Monday’s eclipse just hours after it happens. Eclipse Over America is set to air at 9 pm Eastern.
  • Science: From 12 pm to 4 pm Eastern, the Science channel will be broadcasting live coverage of the eclipse from Madras, Oregon, with commentary from educators and astronomers.
  • The Weather Channel: The Weather Channel will kick off coverage at 6 am Eastern and will check in throughout the day with seven different locations along the path of totality. Twitter has partnered with the Weather Channel to live stream their coverage beginning at 12 pm Eastern.

Further reading