Tomorrow, on June 8, beginning shortly after 5 hrs UT, a large part of the world will be sharing a unique sight never seen by any person now living. During a little more than six hours, planet Venus will cross the face of the Sun, offering a wonderful show for everybody to admire. Nobody should miss the opportunity to witness this great event! And - good luck! - it appears that the observing condition prospects are rather favourable in large areas of the world.
Nevertheless, should you be as unlucky as astronomer Le Gentil in 1769 who, having traversed a large portion of the globe, enduring all the perils of a long sea-voyage, and waiting for 8 years for the transit to occur, was unable to observe it because of a vexatious, black cloud that covered the Sun, you need not despair. There will be ample opportunity to witness this event from the VT-2004 Central Display page (and other websites).
This page, powered by Akamai and therefore mirrored on many hundreds of sites all over the world, will offer selected images from the event, acquired by our colleagues at the large solar telescopes, from the Canary Island to China. All images will be chosen and commented live by a team of professional astronomers in the "VT-2004 Control Room" at the ESO headquarters (Garching, Germany), who will guide you through the various phases of this memorable event and provide a running commentary, beginning before dawn (in Central Europe) on the Day of the Transit and only ending when Venus is well beyond the solar disc.
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