Thursday, June 7, 2012

Venus Transit at Borrego Springs

On June 5, I observed and photographed the 2012 transit of Venus from Borrego Springs. Though the skies were clear, it was quite windy, so most of my photos were distorted. But of these, a few serve to tell the story of this rare siting.

This isn't first contact, but rather, first presentable photo nearest to first contact:

Below shows Venus taking a bite out of the sun:

The teardrop effect can be seen here. Though, I can't claim the effect is a genuine tear drop instead of distortion from the wind.

And another, almost teardrop effect:

A few minutes into the sun:

Here is a close-up of the anti-teardrop effect. A few of my photos at second contact (the point Venus appears fully in front of the sun's disk) showed a bulge of the sun where a teardrop shadow should be. Is it my viewing conditions or something else?

As the transit progressed, the clarity of my images got worse. As of today, I've examined only a third of the photos.

UPDATE: A few more photos added:
This one is my last clear image at this magnification:

As the sun got lower in the sky, I shortened the focal length to get a smaller image. The smaller image showed less of the atmospheric distortion:


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