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Posted at 05:56 PM ET, 11/13/2012

The 2012 total solar eclipse (video and photos)


The diamond ring effect is visible following totality of the solar eclipse at Palm Cove in Australia's tropical Far North Queensland on Nov. 14. (Greg Wood - AFP/GETTY IMAGES)

If you missed the solar eclipse late this afternoon, you’re not alone. Most of the world missed it — in person, that is. The event could be witnessed only from Northern Australia and the Pacific Islands. But thanks to an oldie-but-goodie innovation — video — people around the world could also experience it..

A full solar eclipse is when the moon comes between Earth and the sun, casting a shadow over a large portion of the planet. The last solar eclipse — an annular solar eclipse — took place in May and could be witnessed by people in part of the Western United States, East Asia and over the Northern Pacific ocean. During an annular eclipse, the moon does not entirely block out the sun, since it is farther away from the Earth during that period, leaving a red ring in the sky.

The full solar eclipse occurred at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday ET and was streamed live in various places online. As Wired’s Adam Mann reports, total solar eclipses are rare for individual regions, with an average of 375 years between them. North America is expected to see one on Aug. 21, 2017.

In the meantime, here are some photos of today’s event:


Near totality is seen during the solar eclipse at Palm Cove, Australia. (Ian Hitchcock - GETTY IMAGES)


Spectators line the beach at Palm Cove to view the total solar eclipse. (Ian Hitchcock - GETTY IMAGES)


A tourist watches the moon pass in front of the sun as it approaches a full solar eclipse in the northern Australian city of Cairns. (Tim Wimborne - REUTERS)


A spectatorin Palm Cove attempts to take a picture with his phone during the solar eclipse. (Ian Hitchcock - GETTY IMAGES)


Tourists look at a cloudy sky as the eclipse begins in Cairns. (Tim Wimborne - REUTERS)


A spectator in Palm Cove views the solar eclipse through special viewing glasses. (Ian Hitchcock - GETTY IMAGES)

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By  |  05:56 PM ET, 11/13/2012

 
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