Studying up for The Transit

“The harmony between poor mathematics and science has never been more perfect than our study of the transit of Venus.”

Considering all of the scientific achievements in the history of us, that’s a compelling invitation to an event tomorrow.

Venus will make a nearly seven-hour voyage across the face of the sun tomorrow.

Scientists will calibrate the instruments they use to hunt for planets with atmospheres. That’s a step ahead of the last few times transits occurred, in which scientist used them to calculate the distance to the sun. One can only wonder, of course, what the next Venus transit — in 2117 — will be useful for.

Here are some resources for safely watching the transit. If you don’t feel like looking directly at the sun — and you shouldn’t, by the way — you can watch the whole thing online.

Here’s the schedule for the Saint Paul area:


Go here to find the schedule in your area.