Watch Mercury Today to Travel the Face of the Sun

Mercury is going to pass directly between the Earth and the Sun. Such transit is not going to happen for another thirteen years. So, what are we going to see in the transit? A tiny spot of darkness is going to be visible against the surface of the Sun. While the transit has already started at 7:35 ET, it is still going to be around for at least half of the day.

If the weather is permittable enough, people from South America and Eastern North America can enjoy the best view of the transit. While on the other hand, other parts of the world, including North America, Europe, and Africa, can also enjoy part of the transit. But, here comes the tricky part, without any specialized equipment, you can’t see the transit. Even solar viewing glasses won’t work, because unlike any solar eclipse, Mercury is too small to be seen from the naked eyes. But, if you have a telescope or binoculars lying around, you are always good to go. Always remember, looking directly into the Sun is still dangerous.

But, even if you don’t have any solar filter equipped telescope or a local astronomy club, you can still enjoy the fun. Slooh will be live streaming the entire event starting from around 7:30 AM. While NASA will also be tracking the event, and you can always check that one later. The last Mercury transit was recorded back in May 2016. While the event might be of great significance, it is still a great deal for all the astronomy enthusiasts. Mercury won’t be making another transit until 2032, and when it will do, it would only be visible for most parts of Asia and Europe. As for the American people, Mercury’s transit won’t be visible until 2049. So, it’s always better to keep track of such a great event. It might even turn out to be your lifetime opportunity.

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Bruce Townsend

I am a Ph.D. astrophysicist, Associate Editor, and science communicator, who professes physics and astronomy at various colleges. I’ve written, online, and in print, for Air & Space, Astronomy, Ars Technica, Discover, Drone360, Gizmodo, Popular Mechanics, and Washington.

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