In honor of the first total solar eclipse visible within the United States in 99 years, Facebook and NASA will host several streams for viewers who wish to experience the event on Monday from the comfort of their computers, smartphones, or smart TV sets.
NASA will broadcast the eclipse on its Facebook page from unique vantage points coast-to-coast on Aug. 21, with coverage beginning at noon ET. The eclipse itself is expected to begin at 1:15 pm ET and conclude at 4:15 pm — with the ‘totality’, in which the sun is fully obscured by the moon, occurring at 2:45 pm and lasting for less than two minutes. Facebook will deploy a special notification within users’ News Feeds for access to the live broadcast. And NASA’s coverage will be available from on the ground and in the sky — including from the International Space Station — with options for 4K resolution and 360-degree video.
History would seem to suggest that the eclipse is bound to turn out big numbers for Facebook. The social network says that over 45 million users are connected to astronomy-related pages, and NASA has the largest following of any government organization in the world, with 30 million fans.
And prepare to see a slew of eclipse photos on your Instagram feed: there are roughly 9 million people on the photo- and video-sharing platform who live in cities along the path of the total eclipse, Facebook says, which will be fully available in 14 states.
To view what is arguably the most important astronomical moment since the advent of social media, you can check it out on Facebook next week right here.