There’s a little black spot on the sun today…

…but I won’t see it, clouds are in the way…  (Apologies to Sting, Andy Summers, and Stewart Copeland.)

Well, I was really looking forward to seeing the transit of Venus today, but the weather here in Cincinnati is getting in the way as it is quite overcast. I’ve borrowed a welding mask from a local family (it’s nice to have a local family who has stuff like welding masks), but it looks as though it will go unused.  Phooey.

So, I’ve have to settle for the online live views. Here’s the current one (at the time of my typing) from SLOOH SpaceCamera:

Image of the Venus Transit from SLOOH SpaceCamera. Click the picture to visit the SLOOH website.

Click on the image to go to the SLOOH Website, yourself.

Also, here’s a great movie from NASA — they have others available, but I’m just linking to the one showing ingress: http://venustransit.gsfc.nasa.gov/data/kiosk/dataset/Venus_AIA96s_171In/phase/ingress

I suppose I’ll have to wait until the next one next century. If you’ve got better weather in your area, congratulations!

6 thoughts on “There’s a little black spot on the sun today…

  1. Phil Sena

    Hey, I remembered the Police song from my college days…but weren’t you in grade school?

  2. It took me to read the title twice for me to get the Sting reference … and then I smirked mischievously.

    BTW, I’ll be moving up to Cincy soon friend, so maybe we can go rock climbin’ again with those spider children of yours.

  3. It’s bright and sunny where I live, but I don’t have special viewing glasses, so I’m watching it online, too.

    Awhile back, Saturn and Venus came into near conjunction, not far from the Moon. I sit on the porch every night, so I spent a month watching them come together and then depart. What a beautiful sight that was.

  4. I bought a #10 replacement welding glass yesterday, pulled out the telescope with my variable moon filter and carefully found the sun. It was spectacular, especially with all the sun spots. I got it set up right as Venus was just enveloped by the edge of the sun and could see the faint outlines of the atmosphere of Venus. Just then, my view got blurry and I heard a little sound that accompanied it. That’s when I discovered that my variable moon filter gave its life for the pursuit of science and astronomical beauty–it had a nice spiderweb crack and completely burnt-out look where the sun had been focused.

    The lesson was to keep the telescope pointed at the sun for less than a minute and then point it away. I even saw warping in the welder glass. Who knew it would be so hot?? 🙂

  5. Ooooo — sorry, Mike! I had read a lot of warnings that the sun’s intensity could damage certain telescope set ups. Here in Cincinnati, I used a great filter that prevented damage: thick, completely light-obscuring cloud cover. Worked wonderfully.

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