Friday, June 01, 2012

Eclipse and Transit

Every so often, a cool event gets upstaged.  This Monday, June 4th, at 6 am EST, there's a partial eclipse of the Moon.  The Moon will get partly covered by the shadow of the Earth.  It happens fairly frequently.  But it's pretty cool.  And, to the ancients, it was a way to state that the Earth is a sphere.  That's because the Earth's shadow on the Moon is always round, more or less.  If the Earth was flat, then even if it was a disk, the shadow would sometimes be a thin oval.

Check out Astronomy magazine's eclipse coverage.

The big event happens on Tuesday the 6th.  Here in Michigan, it starts around 6pm EST. Sky & Telescope magazine  says this. And the reason that it's such a big deal (though the effect is way smaller than the lunar eclipse) is that, if you miss it, your next opportunity might be in 2117.  I'd guess that kids born next year won't see one. Few live that long.

But it's not an either-or proposition.  Why not see both? Here in Michigan, there are lots of events set up for the transit:

Transit Events

1 comment:

Stephen said...

Clouded out for the lunar eclipse. But the Transit was awesome for nearly the entire three hours available in Detroit.