NASA releases video of a rare celestial phenomenon

NASA releases video of a rare celestial phenomenon

Millions of people in the Pacific were treated to a breathtaking event on Tuesday and Wednesday when the moon moved in between the Earth and the sun and casted a giant shadow on the planet.

NASA has released a high quality video of the solar eclipse this week for the benefit of space buffs living in North America who were not able to witness it first-hand. The four-minute clip shows the rare celestial phenomenon in its totality.

The eclipse began at 06:19 local time (23:19 GMT Tuesday) as the Moon started to pass directly in front of the Sun. As the eclipse reached totality, the Moon blocked all direct sunlight, turning day into night.

Those who were not able to make the trip to the Pacific this week to see the celestial event can watch it in its entirety through NASA's video posted on YouTube.

Belitung, Indonesia, was one of the best places to view the total solar eclipse.

From before dawn, about 200 people gathered at Olivier beach to watch. About 30 foreigners were in the crowd, travelling from Australia and Europe to see it.

People on the beach cheered at first when the solar eclipse began but then they became all quiet as they witnessed the rare phenomenon occur. Some took photographs of the event while others simply watched in amazement as the eclipse unfolded. They then clapped quietly as the moon started to move away from the sun's view.

Passengers onboard the Alaska Airlines Flight 870 also got a rare view of the total solar eclipse from several thousand feet in the air.

The flight from Anchorage in Alaska to Honolulu in Hawaii was intentionally delayed for about 25 minutes after one of the passengers, astronomer Joe Rao, discovered that its course coincided with the path of the solar eclipse. Alaska Airlines agreed to the change in flight schedule, allowing the people on the aircraft to see the event occur.

NASA releases video of a rare celestial phenomenon