Silicon Valley News

Friday, June 1, 2012

International Space Station to photograph transit of Venus



Don Pettit, an astronaut aboard the International Space Station, is preparing to photograph the transit of Venus. On June 5 and 6, Venus will pass directly between Earth and the Sun.  Venus will appear as a small black dot moving across the face of the Sun. This rare event will not happen again until 2117.

Pettit will become the first human to witness and take pictures of the transit of Venus from space. Check out Pettit on Twitter and Facebook and Google+  for photos and videos from the ISS.

click image to enlarge
Find out about the planet Venus' dramatic trip across the face of the sun in June 2012 in this SPACE.com infographic.
Source SPACE.com: All about our solar system, outer space and exploration

NASA is hosting a live webcast of the 2012 Venus transit.

Astronomers Without Borders and Dutch schoolteacher Steven Van Roode have created a VenusTransit app, which is  available on both the Apple iOS and Google Android platforms, reports Scientific American. Astronomers who watched transits in the 19th century took fairly accurate measurements of the distance between Earth and the Sun. The app attempts to recreate those measurements.



A photo guide created by Space.com illustrates how to safely photograph the transit.

The transit of Venus has historical importance. James Cook's ocean voyage  to Tahiti to observe the 1769 transit of Venus is still a source of inspiration for explorers.




The transit of Venus is trending on Twitter and Google+.