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Mercury Transits Sun - 2019 NOV 11


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About others involved with our hobby... Had my lady come out a few times with 'let me see it'. She does this whenever I am out observing on the balcony. I think she is hooked. That's why she doesn't object buying/hoarding??? astro equipment lately? I have a few things in carts on multiple shops so I guess now is the time :D

I am really happy today. Such a little/big?? thing and it got me smiling for the whole day. It was just half an hour all but so glad I was prepared for this.

P.S. On top of that it looks like 3 hours of clear skies tonight so perfect day :)

Edited by heliumstar
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Just had the BEST luck taking a photo!

First image through first hole in the cloud. Dave

They talked about the transit at my son’s school today. He made it home just in time to see it 

Posted Images

Processed my one and only image. Looks a bit sterile, but still, Mercury quite clear. I spent most of the time observing in the gaps between clouds and didn't think about taking photos much.

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Seen with my Astromedia solar projector from a service station off the M1 near Rugby at around 13:45. Was better with the naked eye, the image is pretty crud with the phone camera. Ignore the blob near the middle, that’s a mark on the card. Image from Skysafari to match up the position of Mercury. Saw for about 10 minutes before clouds closed in. No other chance to see it at all on the remainder of my journey to the SE near Crawley. But at least I got to see something! :) 

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Few shots from today - fast moving, but passing, cloud in Wiltshire and very windy, which didn't help keep things steady. However, the excitement from the group of 20 Astronomy GCSE students that were huddled around the computer attached to the camera on the back of a Celestron 8" with white light filter, waiting for first contact to be evident was superb. Thankfully the cloud passed just in time for us to see both first and second contact.

Second contact through 8" timed at 12:37:26 GMT. My best estimate of first contact is 12:35:51 GMT.

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A while later through the 8" at 13:33:22 GMT

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And a shot through the 10" refractor with white light filter at 13:49:10 GMT

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No luck here despite our considerable preparation. A couple of gaps were so transient there wasn't time to even focus properly.  Fortunately an internet live stream entertained the visitors.   ☹️

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3 hours ago, lukebl said:

I was hoping to catch a series of images at the early stages for an animation, but the clouds were a problem.

However, they did make for quite a pretty animation here. This is between First and Second Contact. You can see Mercury as a little notch at the 1 O'Clock position.

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That's a good point actually, a few wafting clouds can make the scene look more 'artistic'. Great shots everyone. Skies cleared sufficiently here in Ireland too so that's another one knocked off the bucket list. Now to move to Mars in time for the Earth transit in 2084 :D

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From the thread initiator, thanks to all who participated, especially those with photographs. However, here in Chicagoland, all we could see in the cloudy sky was snowflakes and flocks of migrating geese. Nevertheless, we did get to observe the more widely anticipated 2004 and 2012 Venus transits, which I first learned to expect from a book in 1959. The next Venus transits will be in 2117 and 2125.

What always amazes me is that we can predict the positions of gigantic and speedy planets with great accuracy millennia in advance, yet next week's local weather forecast remains rather hazy. Thanks to all here who proved my transit prediction to be quite accurate.

As moderator Stu once suggested for similar situations, I started this thread in this heads-up forum and a nearly identical one in a more specific forum for replies, in this case Observing-Planetary.  I did suggest in my initial post here that replies be directed to the other forum, but things got out of hand and far more were posted here. 

The next Mercury transit will be in 2032, but for those of us here in the US the next is 2049. I was born in 1945, so I'll just have to keep eating my Wheaties to remain sharp for the latter one.

 

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Edited by CentaurZ
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30 minutes ago, Peter Drew said:

No luck here despite our considerable preparation. A couple of gaps were so transient there wasn't time to even focus properly.  Fortunately an internet live stream entertained the visitors.   ☹️

No matter! It was good visiting anyway.

Dan.

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Went over to join about ten stalwarts from the Rosliston Club, hoping to do a bit of outreach, but we only got a handful of the public.

A few very brief clear spells let me focus with my ASI120MC on the Bresser (Lidl special!) Decided not to use a barlow due to tricky conditions.

We missed first contact as it was clouded out for several minutes so Mercury was well on the disc by the time we first saw/imaged it.

Over the next hour, lost of brief appearances.

Then a small but tall tree interfered for most of us while we got about 15 minutes of clear! I got a good run of video just after this.

Nearly everyone packed up in the face of thick, dark cloud and light rain, but Andy (who had a Daystar) persisted and I swapped over to my C90 Mak and DSLR and eventually skies cleared again. A few folks who had stayed in the hope of a sighting saw good views on my camera and Andy's Daystar and I got some whole-disc pictures.

I packed up and spent a good while chatting interspersed with looks at the daystar including seeing my first prominence.

Neither Registax nor Autostakkert wanted to stack the images, so I manually stacked the ten best scoring. Unlike 2016 I had flats, which seem to be even more critical for solar than DSOs!

Added some synthetic colour:

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Not long been back, and have enjoyed reading this thread, and am glad that so many managed to see at least part of the transit.

It sounds like @pruslingand myself were in the minority in having a very good day today.  I'd booked the day off work to ensure that I was mobile and could travel to wherever had the best chance of clear skies, but in the end we only needed to travel about 15 miles north of our homes to the village of Cranborne up on Cranborne Chase.

I've been checking the weather obsessively since last week but thanks to @Stusuggestion, I relied on a combination of Meteoblue and the Met Office which indicated good conditions in Cranborne pretty much all day.

In the end we had clear skies from about 11:30 - 15:00 and were successful in observing an early first bite of the sun taken by Mercury at first contact, then enjoyed second contact and clear views until about 15 mins before a low bank of cloud rolled in to our south and obscuring the sun until it finally broke through just before Mercury was at the closest point to the centre of the solar disc.

At that point an after school football club invaded the football pitch that we has set up on and we thought that was a good point to pack up as I didn't fancy getting the telescopes knocked over by an errant football, so we withdrew to the tap room of the local brewery.

We had a thoroughly enjoyable day and here are a few of my rather poor phone pics from the transit today.

 

 

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5 hours ago, Switch10 said:

Managed a few pics today before the clouds set in. This was the first transit I've observed so was really interesting!

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Glad you got to see it. It was the first for me too. Sadly I won’t be around to see the next Venus transit and I missed the last one as i5 was way before my Astro hobby started. Thanks for posting the pic. 

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Congratulations to those who bagged this.

The only Transit I saw today had a tyre at each corner.

Full cloud out with spots of rain here. I feel vindicated in not having bought a solar filter. Maybe now wait for that until the Sun comes out of this long, bleak minimum. 

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11 minutes ago, Paul M said:

Congratulations to those who bagged this.

The only Transit I saw today had a tyre at each corner.

Full cloud out with spots of rain here. I feel vindicated in not having bought a solar filter. Maybe now wait for that until the Sun comes out of this long, bleak minimum. 

I bought Baader film and made a filter just for today.

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4 hours ago, Saganite said:

 Terrific views of the transit between 12 .50pm and 2.15pm through  a Hydrogen Alpha set up, with a large prom thrown in for good measure. There was some thin cloud about but mostly glorious sun.

We even had an Airliner cross the disc of the  Sun flying inverted ....most impressive :grin:

There were some nice proms weren't there Steve? My PST Mod won't show full disk views but I managed to position Mercury to the top of the fov with the prom visible towards the bottom.

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11 minutes ago, wookie1965 said:

I bought Baader film and made a filter just for today.

Nothing is wasted Paul, once the sun wakes up a bit you will get some good views with the filter.

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21 minutes ago, wookie1965 said:

I bought Baader film and made a filter just for today.

Ah, but you southerners always had a better chance of seeing it :D

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