Amazing video shows eclipse from plane
VIDEO of yesterday's total solar eclipse proves that a plane provides the best possible vantage point to view the natural phenomenon.
The special Alaska Airlines flight gave a group of US skygazers the chance to view the eclipse, that unfolded over parts of Indonesia and the Indian and Pacific oceans, from a prime location above the clouds.
Video of the incredible event showed the passengers getting increasingly excited as the shadow of the moon appeared and made its way across the sun.
"Totality! Totality! Oh my God, look at that!" one particularly excited man exclaimed as the moon reached the centre of the sun.
Flying 530mph at 37,000 feet, the flight intercepted the eclipse 1118km north of Honolulu.
The excursion was arranged after astronomer Joe Rao discovered Alaska Airlines Flight 870 from Anchorage to Honolulu would intersect the "path of totality" - where the darkest shadow of the moon passes over the earth.
However, the flight was due to depart 25 minutes too early, so Rao asked if they could delay the take-off - and the airline agreed.
"It's an unbelievably accommodating gesture," Mike Kentrianakis, solar eclipse project manager for the American Astronomical Society said on Alaska Airline's blog.
"Not only is Alaska Airlines getting people from Point A to Point B, but they're willing to give them an exciting flight experience."
Kentrianakis was also on the flight, along with other "self-described eclipse geeks".
For Craig Small, a semi-retired astronomer, the flight marked his 31st eclipse - and he even brought a "lucky eclipse flag" which had accompanied him on every viewing.