Rare Mercury transit coming up - Tucson News Now

Rare Mercury transit coming up

image: astrosage.com image: astrosage.com
TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

Mercury will cross between Earth and the sun this year; something that only happens about 13 times a century.

On Monday, May 9, The dark silhouette of Mercury will cross through the sun, as seen from Earth, beginning at 4:12 a.m. MST.  It reaches the center-most point of the sun at 7:57 a.m., and reaches the other side by 11:42 a.m.

Our sunrise time for that day is 5:30 a.m., so Mercury will already be in transit as the sun rises in the east.  According to NASA, the planet will appear as 1/158th the size of the sun from Earth during transit.

It will only be visible in the Americas, Europe, Africa and central Asia.

Remember to never look at the sun directly, or you may cause permanent or serious damage to your eyes. You need a special filter for telescopes, or you can use a simple pinhole projector.  Click here for a link on how to create a pinhole projector from timeanddate.com - perfect for science projects!

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