The world on Monday will be able to watch the rarest astronomical phenomenon of Mercury transit, where the planet appears across the face of the sun.
The transit where Mercury passes between Earth and Sun is supposed to begin around 7:12am.ET. At 10:47am.ET, the planet will reach its mid-point and would ultimately cross the disc around 3:42pm.ET, according to NASA. The transit will be visible up to 7 hours and to everywhere on the earth. Around West Coast, the transit will be visible from sunrise to 11:30 PT (2:30 a.m. ET).
Stargazers from Europe and North America would need to pop out their telescopes and binoculars to watch the event. Solar filters are strictly advised to be used while gazing, according to Vox.
Skywatchers in Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, the Philippines and some parts of eastern Asia would have a hard time to enjoy the scene, according to Fox News.
Still confused about the exact time? Don’t worry, the realistic astronomy software programmes like Starry Night and SkySafari will direct you to your country’s time.
The software will help you to check the planet cutting across the sun’s disc, from first look to the final look.
According to NPR, scientists are also looking forward to digging on the planets’ exosphere – a thin layer of gases.
“When Mercury is in front of the sun, we can study the exosphere close to the planet,” NASA scientist Rosemary Killen said in a release from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
“Sodium in the exosphere absorbs and re-emits a yellow-orange colour from sunlight, and by measuring that absorption, we can learn about the density of gas there.”
Forbye, according to scientists, the transiting planet also lower the brightness of the sun.
Like Mercury, Venus also transits between Earth and Sun. It happens only twice a century.
Last time, the transit was witnessed in 2006. Now the next one will not be visible until November 2019. After that, it would be visible in 2032.