Attention Earthlings! This Tuesday (6/05) we will be treated to another celestial spectacle when our sister planet passes directly in front of the sun. The “transit of Venus” will begin in the afternoon and for 6 hours we will be able to see a tiny black dot trick or treat its way across the face of the sun. The best viewing should be around sunset for us West Coasters, and Wednesday morning’s sunrise for the East Coasters.
What is really cool about this particular space show is that it will be the last one in the 21st century, and only the 7th of its kind since recorded history began back in the 16th century. What is uncool about this, is one must have protective eye gear to view it or risk going blind. And no! Regular sunglasses will not suffice.
A few options for safe viewing include solar shades, some very time consuming telescopic trickery, or one of those groovy looking welding helmets. Or you can do what I will be doing, and sip on a glass of Jack Daniels and view it safely via NASA’s live webcast.