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From: TerryMoselaol.com
Date: Sun, 6 Jun 2004 19:50:51 EDT
Subject: Venus in eclipses, Safety.

Hi all,

Nobody spotted the deliberate mistake in my last email about seeing Venus 
very close to the Sun during a total eclipse. I had checked all the total 
eclipses between now & the end of 2020. But I forgot about the hybrid eclipses, e.g. 
the one on 8 April 2005. (A 'hybrid' is a rare type of eclipse which is 
annular along the ends of the track, but total - though only just total - near the 
centre of the track.) 

The 2005 one is total only in the remote uninhabited Southern Pacific, but 
nevertheless it would be possible to see a short total eclipse on board a ship 
there - and I'm sure that several eclipse cruises will be organised by the 
Americans! 
  And, by sheer luck, Venus WILL be very close to the Sun during the total 
part of that eclipse! In fact, it will be just less than 2.5 degrees away, at 
magnitude -3.9!
   BUT, it will be near superior conjunction, i.e. on the far side of the 
Sun, and so nearly 'Full' in phase. 
   So it won't be like the present circumstances.

Are you ready for Tuesday morning....? Filters ready? Batteries checked? Can 
you see the Sun from your location at least 5 minutes before First Contact? - 
You'll want to have it nicely in your field of view before the Transit starts! 
If you are going to project the image, have you got a suitable eyepiece? - 
NOT your best 300 Nagler! 

REMEMBER - SAFETY FIRST! - For you, and anyone else who may be viewing with 
you! 

* Only use a PROPER solar filter!
* Cap the finder, when not using it. 
* Make sure the filter can't blow, or be knocked, off the front of the 
telescope while viewing!
* Cap the telescope if you leave it for more than a few seconds.
* DON'T leave children unattended near the telescope, even if you have it 
capped - it only takes a second to remove it....
* If projecting, turn the telescope at 90 degrees away from the Sun if you 
are leaving it, so that the image won't 'drift' inside the tube, 'cooking' the 
interior. (but don't leave it at all, if there are inexperienced visitors 
there.
* If in doubt, don't.....

Good Luck to all,

Terry Moseley

Last Revised: 2004 June 7th
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