Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Photos from the Transit of Venus

The Washington Post has a picture gallery. The photos I like are 1, 8, 14, 25, and 26. Most of these photos require the big telescopes, one of which was not even on the earth.

I'm glad that this event brought so many people out to learn something about science. There's not enough of that today, and its lack compounds itself when, for example, science textbooks privilege a religious myth above the best we can do with science.

Video from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (speeded up):

1 comment:

Peter said...

I was able to set up some binoculars on my roof in Queens. I taped them to a tripod, punched a hole in a piece of large sketch paper for a shield, and held the sketchbook behind the binocs as a projections screen. It was really cloudy but I was able to see it for about 45 seconds. Really amazing, plus there were 4 or 5 sunspots visible.

Then the clouds came back in, so I went back inside. About 15 minutes later I realized the front room was flooded with sunlight, so I hustled down to the sidewalk (stupid rotation of the earth!).

While I was hurriedly setting everything up again a couple people walking by asked if the transit was visible. I invited them into the stoop area and gave them a little view. It was fun. But as far as I know I was the only one of my friends and family that made any effort to see it, which is kind of sad.