A Conversation for H2G2 Astronomy Society Home Page

Transit of Venus

Post 1

Megan - another transient astronomer

Hi everyone,

So what are people doing for the transit then? For anyone that hasn't some across this yet, on the 8th June there will be a transit of Venus, starting at about 0620 and ending at 1230 (BST, times correct for UK viewers).

There will be a bit of an event at Jodrell Bank with telescopes, members of the local astronomical society, and as many students from the research labs as I can persuade to help out! If anyone happens to be in the area then feel free to drop in and take a look!

smiley - starsmiley - rocket
Megan


Transit of Venus

Post 2

Woodpigeon

Hi Megan,

The early start is good - it will give me a chance before I go to work to set up my old telescope or binoculars for projection of the image onto paper. I had forgotten that it was on its way this year. Thanks for the reminder!

smiley - peacedoveWoodpigeon


Transit of Venus

Post 3

turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...)

I'll be working smiley - sadface

turvy


Transit of Venus

Post 4

Megan - another transient astronomer

Today a film company came to Jodrell Bank and did some filming for a program that will go out on the BBC the Saturday before the transit, we got a whole bunch of students out in the field playing with telescopes to be the background to the short interview - look out for us, I'm one of the ones in the home-made "Transit 2004" t-shirts!


Transit of Venus

Post 5

Mistygirl

Hello

I live in the West Midlands,and love anything to do with astromony,and am out most nights in my garden (if clear)only got binoculars,i'm not up on all the termonology (I;m 58)I have noticed the very bright star looking towards west and was also suprised to see another bright star in the west just before dawn from my bedroom window ,so what is this transit then that is happening,what can i expect to see and were do i look,I dispointed not to see the eclips of the moon.


Transit of Venus

Post 6

moved to new address

Hi Mistygirl,

I'm not an expert, far from it, but I have always loved to watch the stars and planets. Since joining hootoo recently, I have found some interesting places. One is Seti. This is great. My little computer is very happy to be doing something worthwhile. A193231

>>>From the famous Arecibo Observatory, which houses the world's largest single dish radio telescope, scientists are listening out for transmissions from space. Participate in this project for the search for extraterrestrial life with other h2g2 Researchers on The [email protected] Project. If you do take part, there is a small but captivating possibility that your computer will be the one to first detect a message transmitted from an alien civilization.<<<

I have subscribed to NASA Science News: http://science.nasa.gov and spaceweather.com: http://spaceweather.com/

This is brilliant as I get e-mails notifying me of special things to look out for. What you are seeing in the west at sunset is the planet Venus. She is especially bright this week.

>>>NASA Science News for May 3, 2004
The planet Venus, so bright it is often mistook for an alien spaceship,reaches maximum brilliancy this week. Through a small telescope or a good pair of binoculars, Venus looks like a beautiful crescent.
FULL STORY at
http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2004/03may_maximumvenus.htm?list1158964<<<

It’s a shame you didn’t see the Lunar Eclipse. It was cloudy here, too. Managed to see her in her red dress for a while, so was very happy, even though we didn’t see all of it.

I think 'the transit' is Venus moving across the sun. The last time it happened was so long ago, in the nineteenth century, that no-one alive today has seen it before.

Hope this is useful.smiley - smiley


Transit of Venus

Post 7

Mistygirl

Thanx Mustard Seed I thought it might be Venus,its lovely seen thru my binoculars,thanx for the information on the transit.

Happy stargazing

Sandra


Transit of Venus

Post 8

Lemon Blossom (aka Athena Albatross)

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Unfortunately I can't see the whole thing from here. I'll probably just try to set up a pinhole camera viewer unless the local observatory is having a viewing session for the general public.

Assuming anyone can find somewhere with a clear enough horizen--people out on the plains have it easy.


Transit of Venus

Post 9

Megan - another transient astronomer

Hi Mistygirl,

The transit is where Venus passes directly between the Earth and the Sun and we see the planet pass across the solar disk as a small black blob. On it's orbit Venus passes between us and the Sun quite regularly, but due to the relative tilts of the orbits only very occasionaly does everything line up so precisely. The last transit occured in 1882 and the next will be in 2012, although I don't think the 2012 event will be visible from the UK.

There is lots of information on the transit on the web at http://www.jb.man.ac.uk/~slowe/transit2004/index.html

If you want to know what is visible in the sky on any particular day then a good place to look is http://www.Heavens-Above.com They provide images of the night sky as well as the current location of planets and various bright satellites such as the International Space Station.

Megan
smiley - starsmiley - rocket


Transit of Venus

Post 10

Mistygirl

Thank you Megan,I though it might be something like that to do with the sun and Venus as i say i am not up with the termonology,just a keen stargazer.find it relaxing after a stressfull day at work....my hubby thinks i'm mad,out in the garden at night,my neighbours are used to me though,again many thanx


Transit of Venus

Post 11

Mistygirl

Megan
Do you know what time that program will be on the BBC before the transit and on BBC1 or BBC2


Transit of Venus

Post 12

Megan - another transient astronomer

I'm not exactly sure when the show will air, they were a bit vague about that! When I find out I'll let you know.

smiley - starsmiley - planet
Megan


Transit of Venus

Post 13

Mistygirl

Thanx i will look out for you,did you say you might be on it????


Transit of Venus

Post 14

Megan - another transient astronomer

The first of the BBC's programs covering the transit is "Stardate: Transit of Venus" which airs on Saturday 5th June at 1320 (1.20pm) on BBC2.

The presenter will be Adam Hart-Davis (of Science Shack!) and the show will apparently cover how to safely observe the transit, how to help with the measurements that will be going on during the event to measure the Earth-Sun distance (first done by Captain Cook back in 1769), and a round-up of events going on around the UK on the day (including possibly a clip from Jodrell - I'm one of the students in the background with the long hair and a "Transit 2004" t-shirt!).


The events at Jodrell are now planned out - the visitor's centre will be open from 0830 and we will have an array of telescopes set up so that the Sun can be safely viewed by projection, as well as an H-alpha solar telescope and webcam with a live feed in the 3D theatre. There will also be talks about the transit, planetarium showsm and "Ask an Astronomer" sessions throughout the day. Admission is £3 per car as usual.


Everyone keep their fingers crossed for clear weather!

smiley - starsmiley - rocket
Megan


Transit of Venus

Post 15

Mistygirl

Thanx Megan

I will tune into that on Saturday.
wish I was nearer I would love to visit Joderall Bank.My Husbands back at work next week or we might have been able to have made the trip.In Cheshire is'nt it?

thanx again Sandra


Transit of Venus

Post 16

turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...)

Thanks for that Megan

I would love to visit Jodrell Bank on the day. I w*rking though so not a chance. smiley - sadface

I'll just have to get up early if it's sunny and get the 'scope out before w*rk.

turvysmiley - blackcat


Transit of Venus

Post 17

Metal Chicken

Echoing Turvy's thoughts. If I wasn't horribly busy at work these days I'd love to take some time off and come down to Joddrell Bank. As it is I think it'll be binoculars projecting on some white card in the morning before going off to work.
for clear skies.


Transit of Venus

Post 18

Mistygirl

It looks as if there might be coverage of the Transit on BBC1 at 9.50am but only for 5 mins


Transit of Venus

Post 19

Megan - another transient astronomer

I think they are going to be covering events on and off during Breakfast from 6am as well. The highlights show on BBC2 at 2320 (I think) should be good too - somewhere should have got good weather.. Mind you, the Beeb aren't taking any chances, they have got a telescope out in Egypt so they should be fairly certain to get images from somewhere!

It's a shame people have to work. We sent invitations to quite a few local schools but it seems that there is a GCSE science exam that day - great planning on the part of the exam board hey?!

Still, if any of you do drop in to Jodrell for a visit any time, give me a shout and I'll give you a guided tour! smiley - smiley

smiley - starsmiley - rocket
Megan


I just saw it!

Post 20

Woodpigeon

We have been getting a lot of clouds and haze here in Ireland, but just I went to work the clouds broke momentarily, giving me enough time to point my binoculars at the sun, projecting the image onto a white page. Venus was right in the centre of its journey across the sun. It was very clear - so different to a sunspot!

smiley - cool

smiley - peacedoveWoodpigeon


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