Members of the ICG ran a successful event on board HMS Warrior yesterday talking with around 25 children and 60 adults about the significance of the transit of Venus in our understanding of the scale of the Universe, the historical links transit expeditions have to the Royal Navy and Portsmouth, and how they could successfully and safely observe the event this morning.
Transit of Venus Event on HMS Warrior
Unfortunately heavy rain prevented our [http://thebeautifulstars.blogspot.co.uk/2012/06/transit-of-venus-activity-on-hms.html planned activity to measure the distance to the Spinnaker Tower using the method of parallax], but despite that a good time was had, and the children particularly enjoyed looking at boats through the ICG telescope, and seeing pictures of transits on an iPad.
Members of the public said:
"Very informative. Has inspired me to watch the transit online tonight. Thanks"
"Excellent, informative, educational"
"Interesting helpful info. Hope we can see it but will watch internet if not. Thankyou."
The event was run by Dr. Karen Masters along with PhD student Hana Schumacher (and with help from Dominic Galiano in preparation). We hope this will be the start of a successful collaboration with the HMS Warrior educational team and plan for more events in the future (well before the next transit of Venus in December 2117 - there are a lot more interesting astronomical-naval links to make!).
This morning, clouds prevented live viewing of the actual transit. The ICG telescope (with a bit of help from Karen) tried to see it across Langstone Harbour, only to be teased by the gaps in the clouds (for just a short glimpse of the Sun during the event).
ICG Telescope Trying to See Transit of Venus