Wednesday, June 6, 2012

The Transit of Venus

Did you happen to see the Transit of Venus last night? 
"A transit of Venus occurs when Venus passes directly between the sun and earth.  This alignment is rare, coming in pairs that are eight years apart but separated by over a century. 

The most recent transit of Venus was a thrilling sight in 2004.  After the June 2012 transit of Venus (the last one in your lifetime), the next such alignment occurs in 2117."
 When my husband found out this was happening he searched it online and found this really cool website called SLOOH which hosts live feeds of telescopes around the globe so that anyone can log in and see them.  They even offer memberships which allows you to do some of your own space exploration with these telescopes.  Well last night SLOOH hosted a live event where people gathered over the net and watched the telescopes as Venus took it's course past the sun.  Now, it did take about 6 hours to complete it's transit.  The hosts were even joking about how they didn't expect us to sit with them the entire time to watch a dot move from one side of the screen to the next, but they did make it entertaining enough to sit in from time to time.  Each time we checked in I pinned a shot from a different feed.  Below are the shots I took in order throughout the evening.  Here are some of the views, in case you missed it.

At the end they posted this one to show the Transit of Venus from 2004 and last night 2012.

I hope you didn't miss it because it will not happen again until 2117!  Oh and check out SLOOH's upcoming events, particularly the Total Solar Eclipse later this year!  I think we have found a really cool way to watch all the important celestial events from now on! 

Live Universe Show - 12 JUN
Solar Explorer - 19 JUN
Total Solar Eclipse - 13 NOV

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