BALTIMORE (WJZ) — In just days, an amazing cosmic event will take over our skies.

A total solar eclipse will sweep across the United States, as the moon, sun and Earth all align.

It’s an historic, once-in-a-lifetime show.

“We haven’t had one like this that goes all the way from the Pacific to the Atlantic, in 1918,” says Ernie Wright, of the NASA Goddard Space Center. “Ninety nine years.”

Wright studies the moon, and he told us what we can expect during the August 21 eclipse.

“The eclipse that we’re going to have very shortly is a total solar eclipse,” he says. “And this happens when the moon shadow falls on the surface of the Earth. The moon is in between the Earth and the sun.”

“If you’re in the path of totality, which is the 70-mile-wide path that crosses the country, you will eventually see the moon completely cover the sun,” Wright goes on to say.

Totality will be visible along a path that runs from Oregon, through Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, and parts of Tennessee and North and South Carolina.

“So it enters a little bit north and travels a little bit south, but it crosses the entire country,” he says.

“In Maryland, it’ll get up to 83 or 84 percent covered… what you’ll see if you have our safe solar eclipse glasses is the sun being sort of eaten by the moon. So the sun will turn into a crescent shape as the moon covers it. A lot of people are very excited about this.”

In Baltimore, according to NASA’s interactive map, the eclipse will start at 1:18 p.m., peak at 2:42 p.m. and end at 4:01 p.m.

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