Venus transits the Sun
June 6, 2012 |
Did you see Venus passing between the Earth and the Sun this morning? No? Me neither… We’ll have to wait 105 years before the next transit of Venus.
But this rare event wasn’t just an amazing show for stargazers.
It’s been really useful for scientists too. They were able to recalibrate telescopes used to look at the atmospheres of planets passing in front of distant stars. We already know lots about Venus’s atmosphere, so studying it during a transit is a good check on the methods used when we spy far-off worlds.
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