- 31 May 2012 at 4:29 pm #7307
The last transit of Venus – as it passes in front of the sun – will occur on 6 June. Two days before this, there will be a partial lunar eclipse visible from Hong Kong. Hope that in both cases the skies are at least partly clear, unlike with the recent "ring of fire" eclipse!
Info from HK Observatory includes:Quote:The transit of Venus across the sun will occur on June 6 (Wednesday). During the transit, Venus will come between the sun and the Earth. The silhouette of Venus, appearing as a dark dot, will move across the sun's disc.
The Scientific Officer of the Hong Kong Observatory, Mr Woo Wang-chun, said, "Transit of Venus is a rare astronomical phenomenon. It comes in pairs eight years apart, with successive pairs separated by over one hundred years. This transit of Venus will be the second one in a pair, with the first one having occurred on June 8, 2004. After this one, there will be no transit of Venus in the next one hundred years. This transit will occur between 6:12am and 12:49pm, lasting 6 hours and 37 minutes. The entire process can be observed in Hong Kong, as the sun will rise at 5:39am on the day."
As is the case when observing a solar eclipse, members of the public should never look directly at the sun with naked eyes or through a telescope in order to avoid severe damages to their eyes. A safer method is to project the sun's image through a pinhole or a telescope onto a piece of white paper or cardboard and view the projected image. An illustration is given on the Observatory's website:
A webcast of the event will be jointly provided by the Hong Kong Observatory and the Hong Kong Space Museum on the following web page:
A partial lunar eclipse will occur on June 4 (Monday). Mr Woo said, "By the time the moon rises that evening, the eclipse will have started. The middle of eclipse will occur soon after the moonrise, and will be visible in Hong Kong along with the remaining parts of the lunar eclipse. The eclipse will have an umbral magnitude of 0.376, meaning that 37.6 per cent of the moon's diameter will enter the umbra (total shadow) of the Earth at the middle of eclipse."3 June 2012 at 7:21 am #8754
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