CLINE OBSERVATORY OPEN FOR RARE MERCURY TRANSIT

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

MAY 3, 2016

Cline Observatory

JAMESTOWN, N.C. — On May 9, Guilford Technical Community College’s Cline Observatory will host a Mercury transit viewing session 7:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. (weather permitting).

That day, Mercury will pass directly between the Earth and sun and will appear as a tiny dot, slowly traversing the face of the sun. This relatively rare event, called a transit, last happened in November 2006. (It was cloudy in North Carolina that day.) The next transit of Mercury will occur in November 2019.

Cline Observatory will set up safely filtered telescopes for solar viewing to allow the public to catch a glimpse of this rare event. Mercury will appear too small for the unaided eye to see, so magnification is required. Without proper filtration, this event can be difficult and harmful to view. Looking directly at the sun without proper filters can damage eyesight.

For more information, visit http://observatory.gtcc.edu/transits/.

WHAT:  Mercury Transit viewing session

WHEN:  7:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Monday, May 9

WHERE:  Cline Observatory, GTCC Jamestown Campus, 601 E. Main St., Jamestown

ADMISSION: Free

INFORMATION:  http://observatory.gtcc.edu/transits/

Guilford Technical Community College is the fourth largest of 58 institutions in the NC Community College System. GTCC serves more than 40,000 students annually from five campuses and a Small Business Center. Learn more at www.gtcc.edu.

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