Telescopes will be set up at the Klamath Commons park on Main Street on Monday morning, Nov. 11, to offer the public a chance to see the planet Mercury as it passes across the face of the sun, according to a news release.
“A transit of Mercury across the sun is something that comes along only about once every 10 years,” said Klamath County Museum manager Todd Kepple. “To see it with one’s own eyes helps us gain our own personal perspective on the size of objects in our solar system. All we need are clear skies on Monday morning.”
The transit will be in process as the sun rises shortly after 7 a.m. over Southern Oregon on the morning of Nov. 11. The transit will end around 10 a.m.
Because Mercury is so small compared to the sun, a telescope equipped with a solar filter is required to see the event. People should never look at the sun, even with sunglasses.
The next transit of Mercury across the face of the sun won’t occur until 2032.
Another astronomical event coming up this month is a conjunction of the planets Venus and Jupiter. The museum will offer a star party on Nov. 23, by which time the two bright planets will be less than 2 degrees apart just after sunset in the southwest evening sky.
“These two planets will put on a dazzling show as the month proceeds,” Kepple said. “There should be some great photo opportunities, especially when the moon comes up at the end of November.”
Another star party is planned for Dec. 28, when the moon and Venus will appear close together in the evening sky.
For more information contact the museum at 541-882-1000.