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A solar eclipse
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A rare total solar eclipse is set to appear in Australian skies

It's the first time the celestial phenomena has occurred in more than ten years

Leah Glynn
Maya Skidmore
Written by
Leah Glynn
Maya Skidmore

Attention budding stargazers, keen astronomers and anyone who has no plans for April 20, 2023. For the first time in more than a decade (yes, 2012 really was 11 years ago now), Melburnians will have the opportunity to experience a full solar eclipse – and it's shaping up to be pretty damn spectacular.

A total solar eclipse is when the moon travels directly over the sun, blocking out the big star’s bright light and throwing a shadow across the surface of the Earth. In science terms, this shadow is called the ‘Umbra’, and the area beneath the shadow is rather dramatically named the ‘Path of Totality’. 

Those residing on the land within the Path of Totality will get the chance to see the full expanse of this terrifyingly beautiful phenomena with their own eyes. Unfortunately, this time around, only people in Exmouth, Western Australia, will get to see the sun disappear completely behind a black hole, stars and planets become visible, and the sun’s burning white outer ‘corona’ come into terrifying focus for a full three minutes. Gasp!  

For everyone who doesn't live in Exmouth (which is quite a lot of us), the eclipse won’t be quite as dramatic – but we will still get to see it. The sun will disappear above Sydney at 1.36pm, while Melburnians should look up at 1.15pm for the rare solar show. 

Set those alarm clocks, people – you're not gonna want to miss a second of the celestial action.

Look up! These are the best places in Melbourne to go stargazing.

ICYMI: Jupiter and Venus will overlap and be visible to the naked eye.

Plus, where to see the Aurora Australis in Melbourne.

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