Transit of Venus 2012

10 years ago today was the last transit of Venus until 2117. We had a large crowd at the David Dunlap Observatory for the last chance in our lifetime to see the event. Solar glasses were supplied for everyone in attendance, so they could enjoy the transit safely. In addition to solar scopes on the grass, we lugged 3 scopes up to the roof of the admin building, two of which were broadcasting to screens on the grounds for the public to see. Weather was good at the start, but clouds rolled in just before second contact as seen in the video below. Fortunately it did clear up in time to see the full transit. Using eclipse glasses, Venus was visible without a telescope or binoculars.

Scopes at the DDO

My Hα scope was used for the public, so this was shot in white light.

Transit of Venus

For comparison, here’s an Hα picture of the transit of Mercury in 2016. It wasn’t possible to see Mercury without magnification.

Transit of Mercury
Second Contact

Never look directly at the Sun, or you will do irreparable eye damage.