It is an annular eclipse where the sun is obscured by a shadow of the moon. This occurs when the sun, moon and Earth are aligned.
This alignment coincides with a new moon which indicates when the moon is closest to the ecliptic plane – the imaginary path containing Earth's orbit around the sun.
The eclipse causes the sun to appear as a very bright ring, or annulus, in a phenomenon dubbed as the "ring of fire".
However, observers in Scotland and the rest of the UK will see a crescent sun instead of a ring, as this will be a partial eclipse.
The best places in the world to see the 'ring of fire' are Russia, Greenland and northern Canada.
Experts initially indicated Shetland would be the best view in the UK of a solar eclipse, with BBC’s Sky at Night magazine saying it is expected to have a 39 per cent obscuration.
However, parts of the North-east are also expected to have reasonably good levels of obscuration.
From the UK, the eclipse will occur late morning, according to experts. Astronomers have said the phenomenon will begin just after 10am in the UK. A maximum eclipse is expected to occur shortly after 11am, when the Moon will cover close to one-third of the Sun. The partial eclipse will then end around 12.20pm.
Viewing the eclipse with the naked eye can be hazardous as a result of the potential damage the sun can cause to the eyes.