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Last Post 20 Mar 2013 06:56 AM by  Terry Kucera
Eclipses
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20 Mar 2013 05:54 AM

    What would it be called if another planet passed between the sun and the Earth, similar to when the moon passes between the sun and the Earth?



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    Tags: eclipse


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    20 Mar 2013 06:56 AM

    Hi,

    When one object passes in front of another and appears smaller than the object in the background it is called a transit. One recent example is last year's transit of Venus across the Sun (see http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap120607.html). Venus transits of the Sun are quite rare, with less than two every century.

    One unusual transit was a transit of the moon by the Sun seen from the point of veiw of the spacecraft STEREO-B in 2007. STEREO-B was leaving Earth orbit and further away from the moon than Earth is. As a result the moon appeared smaller than the Sun An image of this transit across the Sun seen in the ultraviolet can be seen here: http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap070303.html

    From Earth the Sun's disk and Moon appear to be the same size resulting in our unusual and beautiful total eclipses.

    Cheers,

    Terry

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