Mercury can be travelling across the sun on Monday — one thing that gained’t occur once more for 13 years. And with correct precautions, Canadians can be in a position to absorb the motion.
Paul A. Delaney, a York College astronomy professor and director of the Allan I Carswell Observatory, mentioned it is going to appear like a tiny black dot travelling across the sun.
“It’s comparable in size to a sunspot, except that unlike a sunspot, this one is going to move and it’s going to move from one side of the sun almost across its diameter, in fact.”
The occasion will happen from 7:36 a.m. ET to 1:04 p.m. on Nov. 11, he mentioned.
In fact, it is going to solely be seen if there are clear skies.
Mercury, a planet about 4,800 kilometres in diameter, orbits between the sun and the earth. However as a result of it doesn’t journey on the actual aircraft as the earth goes round the sun, we are able to solely view it passing in entrance of the star hardly ever. Mercury transits happen about 13 occasions a century.
The final one occurred in 2016, however the subsequent one isn’t till 2032.
Though the trek will seem gradual, Mercury will fly across the sun at roughly 241,000 km/h.
How to watch
First issues first — by no means stare at the sun with out acceptable photo voltaic filtration, Delaney mentioned. That normally means discovering a top quality pair of eclipse glasses from a good group or retailer. Or a pair of photo voltaic glasses.
On this case, although, neither can be sufficient. So as to see Mercury, you’ll want magnification in addition to safety from the sun.
A telescope that’s geared up with a properly-rated photo voltaic lens is required, Delaney mentioned. A pair of binoculars that additionally has acceptable photo voltaic filters would work — however they’re pretty uncommon.
The Society for Well-liked Astronomy has extra particulars on to how to safely observe Mercury’s transit.
Delaney recommends attending an occasion in your space that has such a telescope. (The Royal Astronomical Society has an inventory of occasions round the nation right here and a few college observatories and different establishments are additionally internet hosting).
NASA will broadcast the transit as seen from the orbiting Photo voltaic Dynamics Observatory, with solely a short lag.
With recordsdata from Rachael D’Amore, World Information and the Related Press
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