Astronomy lovers in Hawaii treated to a rare ‘Mercury Transit’

Astronomy lovers in Hawaii treated to a rare ‘Mercury Transit’
Mercury is faintly seen, outlined in the red circle. (Source: Astronomers)

HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) -Star gazers in Hawaii and around the world got to view a rare celestial occurrence Monday morning.

For about five hours, Mercury passed between the Sun and the Earth.

Viewers with keen eyes and powerful telescopes could make out the “Mercury Transit,” which began just after 2:30 a.m.

By sunrise, groups of eager astronomy enthusiasts gathered throughout the islands to view the event. NASA says the event only happens 13 times a century.

“It doesn’t move exactly in the same plane. That’s why transits don’t happen often. Most of time when its roughly aligned with us, its above or below the sun. We are very fortunate today that its perfect so mercury passing straight in front of sun,” Subaru Telescope astronomer Olivier Guyon said.

In photos, the tiny black dot toward the bottom half of the sun is Mercury.

On Hawaii Island, astronomers and space enthusiasts gathered at the Keck and Suburu telescopes for a viewing party.

This Mercury Transit won’t be seen from North America again for another 30 years, or from anywhere on earth until 2032.

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