Special Viewing of Transit of Mercury

Pablo Tucker
November 5, 2019

The transit of Mercury and the Sun can be viewed from Earth using special safety equipment. Astronomers use this kind of event to measure things like the distance between Earth and Sun, but the storyteller seeks other ways of engagement! So, a transit of Mercury can only occur roughly 13 times per century near May 8 and November 10. A transit is just like an eclipse, the planet, in this case Mercury, will pass or transit in front of the sun. The agency noted that the Mercury-Sun transit will occur on November 11.

After this, it doesn't occur again until 2032, so take this opportunity to see it now.

Why You Need To Go: See Mercury as it passes between the Earth and Sun for the first time in years!

"Because Mercury is so small from our perspective on Earth, you'll need binoculars or a telescope with a Sun filter to see it", NASA wrote on its website, adding that the event "only happens about 13 times per century".

NASA and MIT scientists analyzed subtle changes in Mercury's motion to learn about the Sun and how its dynamics influence the planet's orbit.

You see, the planets in our solar system all orbit the Sun in orbits that are similar, except for Pluto, which isn't a regular planet, but that's for another day. A tiny but clear black round disk will slowly move, or transit, across the face of the Sun. An even safer way to view the sun is to project the image on to something. We'll have the telescopes and the sun shields you need to safely observe this fantastic event. Mercury is so small in comparison to the sun, so binoculars and/or a telescope will help.

Mercury and Venus are the only two planets that transit the sun.

You can also live stream the event here.

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