Monday May 9, 2016 at 7:15 AM

Join us for a VERY SPECIAL EVENT...
WATCH MERCURY TRANSIT THE SUN
!
 

Status updated on Monday 5/9/2016 at 2:00 PM:

SUCCESS!! We were fortunate that the dense clouds held off until after 10:30 AM
so many folks got to see the planet Mercury passing between the Earth and the Sun!

Thanks to all that came out despite the less-than-perfect conditions.
We had a great time. ;^)

Astronomical Observing at Silver Springs Park in Stow
5238 Young Rd, Stow, OH 44224

 

Directions from the Expressway (Rt 8, either north or south):

1. Take Expressway (Route 8 north or south, as appropriate) and take Exit 7 : Graham Rd / Silver Lake / Stow

2. If you're coming from the south (Akron, Canton, etc.)
Turn RIGHT onto Graham Rd and follow for 1.6 miles to Darrow Rd (Rt. 91)
   
or
If you're coming from the north (Cleveland, etc.)
Turn LEFT onto Graham Rd and follow for 1.6 miles to Darrow Rd (Rt. 91)

3. Turn LEFT onto Darrow Rd (RT.91) and follow for 0.1 mile to Stow Rd

4. Turn RIGHT onto Stow Rd and follow for 1.6 miles to Call Rd

5. Turn RIGHT onto Call Rd and follow for 1.0 miles to Young Rd

6. Turn LEFT onto Young Rd and follow for 0.2 miles to paved park entrance

7. Turn LEFT into Silver Springs Park entrance and follow straight for 0.3 miles to the parking lots next to the baseball diamonds - public restrooms are available there


click for larger image of Silver Springs Park entrance from Young Road in Stow

8. Turn RIGHT into the paved parking lot

You'll see us set up in the grass or on the parking lot, depending on conditions.
Park anywhere that's available but not within 50 feet of the telescopes that are set up.


Latitude & Longitude of our viewing location: N41.193127, W081.408300
in Stow, OH 44224

.
Click here for MAP & DIRECTIONS
 

WARNING!!  To safely observe this event,
specially equipped telescopes are absolutely required!


This computer-generated animation of the transit of Mercury across the face of the Sun compresses 7 hours and 24 minutes into thirty-three (33) 1-second frames, each representing a 15 minute advance in clock-time and shows exactly what we'll be able to see of the Mercury transit. The Altitude and Azimuth along with the date and time (24 hour format ie 13:41:19 = 1:41:19 PM, 14:00 = 2:00PM, etc) are shown and updated from frame to frame and demonstrate the apparent rotation of the Sun due to the Earth's rotation as well as the relative motions of the Sun & Mercury through the sky. The background stars could be seen if the Sun weren't so bright! The image is un-reversed and un-inverted so you'll need to translate the view you'll see through your own inverting and/or reversing telescope - ASSUMING IT'S PROPERLY FILTERED !!!

 

Watch the black silhouette of Mercury glide across the Sun for its entire 7hr 24min trek.  The last time a Mercury transit was visible anywhere from Earth was on November 8, 2006. From Ohio, the next times will be November 11, 2019 followed by one on May 7, 2049. While not the rarest of all astronomical events, it's rare enough to make it worth your time & trouble to see it!
.
As this transit is occurring, the Sun will be 93,856,451 miles away from us observers and Mercury will be 51,818,225 miles distant. The effect this distance difference will make is that Mercury will appear nearly twice as large compared to the Sun than it actually is. Keep in mind that more than 23 million Mercurys would comfortably fit inside the Sun!

 

WARNING!!  To safely observe this event,
specially equipped telescopes are absolutely required!

 

Where you can go to safely view this rare,
but predictable, astronomical event...

ACA members and others will be set up with proper
viewing equipment at locations throughout northeast
Ohio to bring this event to as many people as possible
.
Additional viewing locations will be posted here as they become known:
.

City Description
& Location
Map & Directions
Stow "View the Transit of Mercury!"
Please see driving directions at the top of this page.
Contact: Dave Jessie - 330-688-9043
Website: http://www.stowastronomy.org

Observing from 7:15 AM to 2:45 PM
LATITUDE & LONGITUDE of our viewing location:
N41.193127, W081.408300

Both white-light & Hydrogen-alpha scopes will be available
.
to Stow Observing Location
Canton "View the Transit of Mercury"
Hoover-Price Planetarium
800 McKinley Monument Dr NW
McKinley Museum Canton, OH 44708

Contact: David Richards - hooverpriceplanetarium@hotmail.com

Times of observing event to be announced...
to Hoover-Price Planetarium
observing
location
 

WARNING!!  To safely observe this event,
specially equipped telescopes are absolutely required!

 

Data below is for Northeast Ohio on Monday May 9, 2016

Event

Time

Altitude

Azimuth

First Contact:

7:13:53 am (EDT)

9.6 75.0

Second Contact:

7:16:59 am (EDT)

10.2 75.5

15 above horizon:

7:42:59 am (EDT)

15 79.5

20 above horizon:

8:09:55 am (EDT)

20 83.8

30 above horizon:

9:02:44 am (EDT)

30 92.3

40 above horizon:

9:55:44 am (EDT)

40 102.0

50 above horizon:

10:51:29 am (EDT)

50 114.5

Highest above horizon:

1:22:16 pm (EDT)

66.5 180.0

Third Contact:

2:37:55 pm (EDT)

61.3 220.4

Fourth Contact:

2:41:04 pm (EDT)

61.0 221.7

.
What do we mean by a "contact" event? Click here for the definition
.

For transit information for your location, anywhere in the world, visit:
http://aa.usno.navy.mil/data/docs/Transit.php


Due to the extremely eccentric (non-circular) orbit of Mercury coupled with its 7 inclination of Mercury's orbit to the ecliptic, transits occur predictably, but with an odd cadence; they occur in May or November with May transits occurring about half as frequently as November transits. Currently, they occur within a few days either side of May 8 and November 10. The interval between one November transit and the next November transit may be 7, 13, or 33 years; the interval between one May transit and the next May transit may be 13 or 33 years.


For additional information, please see this excellent Space.com article

 

WARNING!!  To safely observe this event,
specially equipped telescopes are absolutely required!

As you can see, Mercury transits don't happen often.
Let's hope for clear skies since we may not get another chance!

Image of the June 2004 Venus transit shown below was captured by Astronomy Club of Akron member John R. Crilly

This photo shows Venus transiting the Sun - Please keep in mind that Mercury will appear to be 1/5th the diameter of Venus in this photo and 4.36% the apparent surface area - very small indeed!

 

WARNING!!  To safely observe this event,
specially equipped telescopes are absolutely required!

 

 Solar System objects rise/set times on this date from Stow, Ohio...




 

Live AccuWeather Satellite Mosaic

  

Jet Stream (updates automatically to latest available image)
    The Jet Stream affects astronomical "seeing" (steadiness of the air)
    If we're in a gray area, seeing will not be as good as in a white area.
    If we're in a white area, the shorter the arrows, the better.

 

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