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Mercury Transit

November 15, 1999

In this simple photograph, Mercury's grazing transit is visible as a small dot on the upper left hand limb of the solar surface...

This photo taken of Mercury's grazing transit of the Sun of November 15, 1999 was done with a Nikon 35mm automatic camera hand-held to the lens. The eyepiece used was a 17mm plossl connected to a Celestron 4.5 reflector employing an Orion full-aperature solar filter.

The image has not been retouched or adjusted in any way. The upper one is the glossy copy of the photo, and was scanned in. It is exactly as it appears on the negative, while the lower one was scanned in and converted to black and white to enhance contrast.

In 2003, I had a similar chance to catch the Mercury Transit right at sunrise, but Ohio skies thought otherwise! However... Thanks to some of my great friends from "Around The World", I can share!



May 7, 2003 - Mercury Transits the Sun! ...And Toto? Your ride is waiting....

Comments: There was time. I knew there was time. The Sun kisses the horizon here just early enough that I should have had approximately a 30 minute window to view the end of Mercury's transit of the Sun... I was set up and ready to go. The sky was turning a great shade of pink and orange...

But the clouds said no.

It's an astronomy fact. We all know that. It's a weather-dependent hobby and that's why so many of us have other hobbies as well. And thank the starz that one of them is the internet, eh? Because with the marvelous piece of equipment comes opportunities one normally wouldn't have... Like watching a transit from another country! Two of my oldest and dearest friends were sitting in prime positions to watch what was either veiled by darkness or clouds here... And Cor Berrevoets is pure magic!



As soon as I got "on-line" this morning, he had this waiting for me... Isn't it awesome? And although it's about time to leave for work in Ohio, it's nearing lunch in the Netherlands and the critical moment of egress. While I head back outside to make sure opportunity isn't knocking at the door and I'm not home, Cor heads back to the scope and captures the last moments....



I know what he's up to, and the magic isn't about to end... And I look forward to his genius! But Cor ain't the only one in Europe that had a shot at this... For once my friend, Alistair Thompson, also had an opportunity in the always cloudy UK, at an astronomical event! And when I got home? Well, check this out....



Congratulations Alistair! I think it's just fantastic that you both got to see the event, and I cannot thank you enough for sharing with me and allowing me to share with others as well! Even though I didn't get to see it personally? It doesn't get much more personal than having friends share their good fortune with you...

And it just doesn't get much better than that!!

"There's a little black spot on the Sun today. It's not the same old thing as yesterday.... "



"It's something unpredictable... But in the end is right. I hope you had the time of your life..."

~theAstronomer

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