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NASA Shares Spectacular Photo of Rare Cosmic Event to be Seen Next in 2117

By: Buzz Staff

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Last Updated: June 29, 2022, 11:58 IST

NASA shared that it was clicked a decade ago by its Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO).  (Credits: NASA)

NASA shared that it was clicked a decade ago by its Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO). (Credits: NASA)

The photo is of the transit of Venus across the face of the Sun.

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has treated space enthusiasts and others to a magnificent picture of a rare cosmic event. Shared on NASA’s official Instagram page, the photo is of the transit of Venus across the face of the Sun. “She was one of the rare ones, so effortlessly herself, and the world loved her for it,” the caption read. Alongside the picture, NASA wrote that it was clicked a decade ago by its Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO). Explaining the phenomenon, NASA shared that solar transits are “a planet's passage across the Sun's face, as seen from Earth's perspective.”

Basically, a transit is said to occur when an object crosses in front of another in space. Besides the solar transits of Mercury and Venus, another example of transit is when the moon passes between the Earth and the Sun. Here, the moon transits the sun and the phenomenon is also called solar eclipse, as per NASA.

It added that the only transits that can be observed are that of Mercury and Venus, which makes the event a rare one. According to the space agency, solar transits of Venus occur in pairs with over 100 years of gap between them. Hence, the next solar transit of Venus is not to be seen in the next 100 years. The last time such rare event took place was in 2004 and 2012 and it will now be witnessed in the year 2117.

In 2012, the solar transit lasted for about 7 hours and could be observed worldwide from all seven continents. While the cosmic occurrence is a treat to the eyes for many, NASA shared it also helps astronomers in their research. Solar transits assist the astronomers in studying the atmospheric composition and orbit of planets.

The SDO, responsible for capturing the event, monitors the sun continuously and measures its atmospheric and magnetic field while examining the core of the closest star to us.

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first published:June 29, 2022, 11:58 IST
last updated:June 29, 2022, 11:58 IST