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Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Venus Transit

Tuesday's Venus Transit in front of the Sun was the highlight of my week.  Sure, I'm part of the Aerospace academic community, but an event like this, one that wont happen again for another 105 years, is pretty exciting no matter who you are.  The transit occurs when Venus aligns directly in front of the field of view of the Sun (with respect to the Earth).  In the early 18th Century, the Venus Transit was documented and used as a rudimentary way of estimating the distance from the Earth to the Sun.  I was able to witness the event at work, where some of my co-workers had set up telescopes with a variety of filters for safe viewing of the Sun.  I even had the opportunity to scope the Sun through a pair of binoculars that had visible light filters.  I feel pretty lucky to have been able to experience this event first-hand.  In case you missed it:

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