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Rare total solar eclipse thrills thousands in South America

By Sharon Marris, news reporter

Thousands of people have watched a total solar eclipse as it crossed ov..

By admin , in Tech , at July 3, 2019

By Sharon Marris, news reporter

Thousands of people have watched a total solar eclipse as it crossed over Chile and Argentina.

The two countries and a small uninhabited South Pacific atoll were the only ones treated to the spectacle on Tuesday evening UK time.

Tens of thousands of tourists, astronomers and locals saw the event in person, while many more watched live feeds from around the world.

A partial eclipse was visible in some other parts of South America.

Image: The total solar eclipse was seen in Chile and Argentina, along with a South Pacific atoll

A solar eclipse occurs when the moon passes between the Earth and the sun and blocks the sunlight.

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The eclipse lasted just over two minutes and made its first landfall in La Serena.

The Chilean city normally has a population of 200,000 people but it has had to cope with the arrival of more than 300,000 visitors for the event.

More from Chile

People watch a solar eclipse at La Silla European Southern Observatory (ESO) in La Higuera, Coquimbo Region, Chile, on July 02, 2019. - Tens of thousands of tourists braced Tuesday for a rare total solar eclipse that was expected to turn day into night along a large swath of Latin America's southern cone, including much of Chile and Argentina
Image: Some small towns have been overwhelmed by the number of visitors

US tourist Stephanie Bouckurt said the experience was recommended to her by a friend, adding: "They told me that nothing compares to a solar eclipse, so that's why we're here. We're super excited."

Chile, with some of the world's clearest skies and most powerful telescopes, was the perfect viewing spot for the solar eclipse.

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