Category Archives: Transit of Venus

The transit of Venus, from Saturn

Tonight’s transit of Venus may be the last for observers on Earth for the next century, but the Cassini spacecraft will only have to wait a few months. On 21 December 2012, Saturn, Venus and the Sun will be aligned … Continue reading

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Transit minus seven hours

It’s around seven hours to first contact and the Svalbard teams are uncovering their telescopes to make final checks and prepare for a night of observing. The sky is clear in places, but clouds currently hanging over the mountains could … Continue reading

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Team Svalbard sail the Arctic seas

The Venus Express science working team and members of the press covering the 2012 transit at just after midnight on 5 June, exactly 24 hours before the start of the transit begins here in Svalbard.  

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Venus approaches the Sun

Venus appeared in the field of view of ESA/NASA’s SOHO satellite on 1 June, and has been fast approaching ahead of transit on 5-6 June. SOHO’s LASCO instrument won’t be able to see the transit because its coronagraph blocks out … Continue reading

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ESA’s missions gear up for the transit of Venus

Here’s a quick-look summary of what we can expect from our space-based missions during the transit: Venus Express: solar occultation experiment – using the Sun’s light to analyse Venus’ atmosphere, an important technique for exoplanet studies. Proba-2: Watching for the … Continue reading

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Voyage to the midnight sun

Last night the Venus Express science working team, along with ground-based observing teams and media crew here to cover the transit, took a break from meetings to enjoy a boat ride out to the glaciers of Spitsbergen under the midnight … Continue reading

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The transit of Venus – live from the Arctic!

In Europe’s most northerly town of Longyearbyen, teams of scientists are preparing to observe the last transit of Venus of this century using ground-based telescopes. From ESA’s Space Astronomy Center (ESAC), Michel Breitfellner and Miguel Perez Ayucar – who are … Continue reading

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ESTEC’s ACE astronomers prepare for transit of Venus

Activities at ESA’s European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC) in Noordwijk, the Netherlands are ramping up for the transit of Venus, visible from sunrise on 6 June for most of Europe. ESA’s Venus Express project scientist Håkan Svedhem drew … Continue reading

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Extrasolar worlds and transits

While transits of the 18th and 19th centuries gave astronomers a way to answer one of the biggest astronomical questions of the time – just how big is the Solar System – modern day astronomers use transits to search for … Continue reading

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Venus and Earth: worlds apart

At first glance, Venus appears much like the Earth: their size and mass are fairly similar and so are their densities. Like Earth, Venus’ rocks are likely mostly basaltic, created during intense periods of volcanic activity when the planets formed … Continue reading

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