See what totality looked like across the country during the eclipse

By | April 13, 2024

Editor’s note: A version of this story appeared in CNN’s science newsletter Wonder Theory. To receive it in your inbox, Register for free here.

As we watched the total solar eclipse alongside my colleagues, I was struck by the way that wonder unites us all.

We were among more than 16,000 people gathered at the Great Lakes Science Center in Cleveland to observe the celestial spectacle.

People formed friendships on the lawn, a short distance from the vastness of Lake Erie, as they expected to share a unique moment.

Nothing prepared me for the intense emotions I felt when Baily’s beads and the “diamond ring” effect gave way to totality. Temperatures dropped as a 360-degree sunset fell in a stormy-looking sky, and the sun released pink ribbons of light that danced in the corona.

For four minutes the enchanted crowd witnessed an event that ancient humanity had also experienced. And the great thing is that we spent those unforgettable moments together.

Solar update

The team launched a weather balloon with the aim of sending it into the path of the eclipse, calling the experiment Project Eclipse.  -Lisa ChernsThe team launched a weather balloon with the aim of sending it into the path of the eclipse, calling the experiment Project Eclipse.  -Lisa Cherns

The team launched a weather balloon with the aim of sending it into the path of the eclipse, calling the experiment Project Eclipse. -Lisa Cherns

Speaking of the joy of shared experiences: Thank you, dear readers, for sharing your photos and stories about the eclipse with us!

Michael Goldstein, 12, of Toronto and his friends Ilan Kagedan, Michael “Misha” Vishnever and Brady Sonshine launched a weather balloon from Vaughan, Ontario, before traveling to Burlington to catch a glimpse of totality.

The balloon, carrying two cameras and two trackers, floated 550 miles (888 kilometers) and landed at Green Hills Preserve in North Conway, New Hampshire, before being recovered Wednesday, he said.

Check out Goldstein’s stunning image of the solar eclipse in our Wonder Theory reader images gallery.

Want to chase the next solar eclipse? We’ve put together a list of the following that might inspire you to travel for some truly stunning views – and don’t forget to hold on to your eclipse glasses.

Fantastic creatures

Parrots are intelligent creatures, and now researchers are testing how deep these cognitive skills go.

The birds have problem-solving skills that are comparable to those of young children. When parrots were presented with a balloon game on a tablet, they showed signs of mental stimulation.

But the game was difficult for the feathered creatures because of their anatomy – and the research could lead to a new design for tablets that were better suited for use by the clever birds.

Explorations

Evelyn Husband and her wife, NASA astronaut Rick Husband, are seen with their children, Matthew and Laura.  - Thanks to Evelyn HusbandEvelyn Husband and her husband, NASA astronaut Rick Husband, are seen with their children, Matthew and Laura.  - Thanks to Evelyn Husband

Evelyn Husband and her husband, NASA astronaut Rick Husband, are seen with their children, Matthew and Laura. – Thanks to Evelyn Husband

On January 28, 2003, Evelyn Husband and her wife Rick celebrated their dating anniversary by having a video call while he was commander of the space shuttle Columbia. Neither knew this would be their last conversation, and the shuttle broke up upon return on February 1.

More than 21 years later, family members like Evelyn and her daughter Laura Husband continue the legacy of their loved ones.

Evelyn serves on the board of a ministry that provides mentorship to fatherless boys, and Laura pursues creative passions she shared with her father.

The Columbia tragedy also changed the way NASA approached spaceflight in five major ways after the disaster to make post-disaster exploration safer.

Watch the final two episodes of the CNN Original Series “Space Shuttle Columbia: The Final Flight” on Sundays at 9 PM ET/PT.

We are family

Since the 1991 discovery of his 5,300-year-old frozen remains in the Tyrolean Alps, Ötzi the Iceman has intrigued scientists.

The authors of a new study suggest that a single-point piercing instrument was likely used to create the 61 tattoos on his body, and it’s possible that the markings were considered an ancient form of healing.

In addition, researchers discovered an ancient grave in what is now Argentina’s Patagonia, including a person buried with a fox, suggesting that dogs’ canine relatives were once humans’ best friends.

A long time ago

Antarctica is an excellent location for meteorite hunting.  Terrestrial rocks appear abundantly in a blue ice area during the Chilean Antarctic Institute's 2022 field mission to Union Glacier in the Ellsworth Mountains.  - José Jorquera (Antarctica.cl)/University of Santiago;  ChiliAntarctica is an excellent location for meteorite hunting.  Terrestrial rocks appear abundantly in a blue ice area during the Chilean Antarctic Institute's 2022 field mission to Union Glacier in the Ellsworth Mountains.  - José Jorquera (Antarctica.cl)/University of Santiago;  Chili

Antarctica is an excellent location for meteorite hunting. Terrestrial rocks appear abundantly in a blue ice area during the Chilean Antarctic Institute’s 2022 field mission to Union Glacier in the Ellsworth Mountains. – José Jorquera (Antarctica.cl)/University of Santiago; Chili

About 1,000 meteorites are found every year in the white, icy desert of Antarctica.

The fragmented space rocks tell a story about the formation of our solar system and help astronomers piece together the history of this corner of the universe.

But global warming due to the climate crisis is causing meteorites to sink into the melting ice. About 5,000 space rocks could disappear every year, new research suggests.

Curiosities

Bookmark these stories to share with your friends:

— Archaeologists working in Pompeii in southern Italy have uncovered the remains of a banquet hall decorated with striking frescoes of mythological characters.

– Rangers in Western Australia have captured an image of an incredibly rare, bizarre-looking blind mole – and it is the second sighting in six months.

– Rock paintings called petroglyphs found next to dinosaur footprints in the Brazilian state of Paraíba were likely made by prehistoric people who may have found the tracks meaningful, a new study shows.

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