UCCI observatory records Mercury transit

| 11/05/2016
Cayman News Service

Mercury passing the Sun on Monday, 9 May 2016 (Photo courtesy of UCCI Observatory Director, Dr Bill Hrudey)

(CNS): Cosmic experts at the University College of the Cayman Islands joined astronomers around the world on Monday in recording the transit of Mercury across the Sun. The solar system’s smallest planet and the one closest to our star was captured on film by Dr Bill Hrudy at the Observatory he founded at UCCI. Over 125 students and members of the public were also there to watch the transit on a classroom screen as well as through several specialist telescopes.

It was the first time Mercury crossed the Sun’s face from Earth’s perspective in more than a decade. It took around seven hours to pass the star and provided scientists the world over with more data about the planet and its very thin atmosphere. Mercury orbits the sun every 88 days but because of its tilt to the plane of Earth’s orbit it doesn’t usually appear to us to pass in front of the Sun.

NASA recorded the event and has created a time-lapse video (see below).

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Category: Environment, Photography, Space

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