On Nov. 11, the Allan I. Carswell Observatory team at York University will set up special solar telescopes along Campus Walk on the Keele Campus so that students, faculty and staff can watch Mercury as the tiny planet passes in front of the sun.
Observatory telescopes equipped with solar filters to allow for safe viewing of the sun will be available for anyone interested in watching this event. The telescopes will be set up (weather permitting) from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. This is a free public event, with knowledgeable students and faculty available to answer questions.
Since the orbit of Mercury lies inside of Earth’s orbit, Mercury passes between Earth and the sun about 13 times per century. The combination of Mercury’s orbital period and orbital inclination with respect to Earth give rise to the relatively low number of such transit events. From Earth, observers will see this as a small black dot moving slowly in front of the sun. Toronto is well placed to observe the transit.