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May 23, 2012
NASA Airs Video of Solar Eclipse As Seen From Space

HOUSTON - NASA Television will air time-lapsed video documenting images of the recent annular solar eclipse as seen from space aboard the International Space Station.

NASA astronaut Don Pettit, who has been living aboard the space station since his arrival in late December, captured images of the astronomical event Sunday as the orbiting facility made its way around the globe at 17,500 mph.

The video will be broadcast on NASA TV Wednesday, May 23 during the ISS Update hour that airs at 10 a.m. CDT. It will also air during subsequent video files throughout the day.

While flying at about 240 statute miles above Earth, Pettit captured the rare solar eclipse as the moon cast its dark shadow across the planet below as it lined up between Earth and the sun. An ominous black cloud-rather than a "ring of fire" as seen from Earth-appears in this video across the Western Pacific about 20 degrees East, North-East of Tokyo as the space station circles the globe.

"It is amazing to see an eclipse from orbit," Pettit said. "The shadow on Earth looks just like what you see in the physics books and the astronomy book where those folks figured all that out without ever having seen what that shadow looks like."

For NASA TV downlink and schedule information, visit:


To view the video, individual still images and to listen to Pettit's conversation on seeing the eclipse from orbit, visit Pettit's blog:


Visible in parts of Asia, the annular solar eclipse was the first time in more than 18 years it also was seen in the United States. NASA wants to see your images of the recent rare event. Share your image of the annular solar eclipse on Flickr:


For more information and to view more current imagery taken from the International Space Station, visit:



Amiko Kauderer
Johnson Space Center, Houston

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