None of us will likely see Venus pass, like a moving beauty spot, across the face of the sun again.¬†From the U.S. to South Korea, people around the world turned their attention to the daytime sky on Tuesday and early Wednesday in Asia to make sure they caught the rare sight of the transit of Venus. The next one won't be for another 105 years.
Century's last transit of Venus today
"If you can see the mole on Cindy Crawford's face, you can see Venus," Van Webster, a member of the Los Angeles Astronomical Society, told anyone who stopped by his telescope for a peek on Mount Hollywood.
In India, too, the much-awaited cosmic event - the transit of the Venus gives sky lovers all over the country an opportunity to witness the celestial phenomenon.
Transit of the Venus is a rare eclipse during which the planet passes between the Earth and the Sun. The planet appears as a black spot gliding across the fiery face of the sun, Nehru Planetarium Director N Rathnasree said.
After June six, the next Venus transit will happen after 105.5 years in 2117, making this a lifetime's event, Science Popularisation Association of Communicators and Educators (SPACE) Director C B Devgun said. From the Earth, this phenomenon is seen when the Venus passes between the Sun and the Earth. It occurs in intervals of 8, 121¬Ĺ, 8, 105¬Ĺ and 8 years, Devgun said.
The phenomenon should be seen only through solar filters, special solar glasses or with the help of pin hole cameras, Secretary of Planetary Society of India N. Sri Raghunandan Kumar said.
The last transit of Venus occurred on June 8, 2004 and it was visible across India.
This time, the starting phase of the event called 'Ingress Exterior' will only be visible in India. It can be seen after sunrise for about 5 hours 30 minutes for the observers in the east of the country to about 4 hours 30 minutes for those in the west. The entire transit event will be visible from north western North America, the western Pacific, northern Asia, Japan, Korea, eastern China, the Philippines, eastern Australia and New Zealand