University News

Transit of Venus Viewings June 5

June 4, 2012

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MACOMB, IL -- On Tuesday, June 5, a "once-in-a-lifetime experience" will take place when Venus will pass across the face of the sun, producing a silhouette that no one alive today will likely see again ( And the Western Illinois University Department of Physics wants to make sure you get a chance to view the Transit of Venus beginning at 5 p.m. June 5.

The physics department has made arrangements to view the Transit of Venus at two locations in the Macomb area. A solar telescope will be set up at the south edge of Chandler Park in downtown Macomb, and several physics professors will be on hand to answer questions. Two telescopes will also be set up at the University's Malpass Library Archives Unit (sixth floor). One solar telescope will be set up on the balcony facing west with a camera recording the image and showing the image on a screen within the Archives, while the other telescope will be set up so individuals in the Archives can see other features of the active sun.

According to Physics Professor Jim Rabchuk, the June 5 event involves the passing of the disk of the planet Venus in front of the disk of the Sun.

"We will be able to see it initiated (the ingress), but the sun will set before it is completed (the egress)," Rabchuk explained.

For more information, contact the physics department at (309) 298-1596.

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