Experience rare viewing of the Transit of Venus at Civic Museum

The public is invited to an admission-free talk by Dr. James Hunt followed by a rare opportunity to view the Transit of Venus on Tuesday, June 5, 2012, from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m. at Guelph Civic Museum.

The Transit of Venus is a rare astronomical phenomenon that occurs when Venus passes directly between the sun and earth and can be seen as a small dot gliding slowly across the face of the sun. Transits are rare sightings, as they occur in pairs eight years apart, and then not again for more than a century. The most recent pair occurred in 1874 and 1882. After 2012, the next chance to experience the Transit will be in 2117 and 2125.

“We’re thrilled to provide this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see the Transit of Venus,” say Katherine McCracken, Director of Guelph Museums.

At 5:30 p.m. Dr. Hunt, Professor Emeritus of the Department of Physics at the University of Guelph, will give a brief talk about the geometric alignment of the planets for the Transit and the lives of the astronomers who have studied these rare occurrences.

At 6:00 p.m. a live feed from the Observatory at the University of Guelph will be projected on a screen inside the museum. A telescope with a solar filter – to ensure safe viewing – will be set up outside the museum for those who wish to view the Transit first hand. The public is reminded that it is not safe under any circumstances to look directly at the sun.

In the event of rain or cloudy skies, the event will be cancelled.

Admission is free. Guelph Civic Museum is located at 52 Norfolk St.  For more information, call 519-836-1221 ext. 2774 or visit guelph.ca/museum

Posted by Kim Lawrence on May 22, 2012