Big Picture Science, 5-29-12, Noon-1 PM: "Mass Transits"
On June 5, our sister planet Venus will slowly slide across the face of the sun. This will be the last transit of Venus until 2117, so there’s no subsequent chance to observe this celestial spectacular for anyone alive today. Join us for a special episode devoted to this rare event. Two centuries ago, nations were locked in a race to be the first to measure the Venus transit. From the first observation by the “father” of British astronomy to Captain Cook’s Tahitian expedition in the 18th century, meet the pioneers who were trying to nail down the scale of the cosmos. Plus, tips for observing the 2012 transit … how the Kepler spacecraft uses transits to detect Earth-like worlds … and could there be life floating in Venusian clouds? IF YOU MISS THE BROADCAST, hear this at: radio.seti.org