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Transit of Venus - June 8, 2004

Dear friends,

Please consider joining Nomi and me as we observe the Transit of Venus next Tuesday morning, June 8, 2004, at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.

For those of you unfamiliar with the concept, a transit is when a planet visibly moves across the face of the Sun. From here on Earth, we can observe the transit of only the two inner planets, Mercury and Venus.

But transits can be rare. The transit of Venus only takes place about twice every 120 years. The last transit was in 1882, and the next one will be on June 6, 2012. If you miss that one, you'll have to wait until 2117 for the next.

Unfortunately for those of us in the United States, the 2004 transit is going to take place from roughly 1:19 AM to 7:23 AM EDT. That means that we'll miss most of it. However, with sunrise at roughly 5:07 AM, the final part of the transit, including Third Contact and Fourth Contact, will be observable. Assuming the weather is good, that is, but the current prediction is for a clear and beautiful sunrise that morning.

And the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics has graciously offered to open its observatory for transit viewing that morning, and that's where Nomi and I will be. We're planning to go even is the sky is cloudy, as they'll also be showing live webcasts of the transit from parts of the world where the Sun will be visible for the whole event. So, if you're willing to wake up before dawn to see an event that will only happen twice in your lifetime, meet us there at 5 AM and be a part of history.

For more information:

For information on the Harvard-Smithsonian viewing:



fooey fooey FOOEY!

never mind that i'm not within driving distance to meet up with y'all. i'm not even in the same time zone! which unfortunately also means...

by the time the sun rises in chicago (5:15a CDT = 6:15a EDT), it will be ALMOST OVER! or will it...



Re: fooey!

But thankfully, with today's modern technology, you'll be able to view recordings of the transit in time-lapse photography. And if you want to get up really early, you could probably watch a live webcast.
I wish I could be there with you two, but I have to be in New York that day. Maybe there is a place there doing a viewing. Otherwise, I'm on my own. The good thing is that I have time to buy viewing shades (special) and a box. :> Happy Viewing!
There may be a local viewing in the New York area...
Love to. Live out of state.
There may be a local viewing in the New Jersey area...
Cool idea, but I'm more likely to stay up 'til 3 than get up at 4... I'll look forward to your report, though!
If you are really up that late Monday night, look for a live webcast or television broadcast. You'll probably be able to find one.
Hmmm, that's a good point...
That might work for me (depending on how much sleep I manage to get in over the weekend).
Well, if you decide to go, you'll find us there.

i'll join you

This is something I definitely wanted to do, but I wasn't sure that the Harvard lab would have enough room for "random visitors." It sounds like you're proving my assumption wrong! So let me know what time I should be there, and I'm there. Maybe I can bring Gami with me, too.

Re: i'll join you

According to the link I posted, they'll be opening up at 5 AM. We'd love to see both of you or either of you there!

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