The passing of Venus across the face of the Sun, a transit, is not an everyday occurrence. Today, as long as the clouds allow it, Colombians will be able to witness one of these rare events, the final one for this century, as the next one will not take place until 2117. In Colombia, the transit should start at approximately 5:09 p.m.
With telescopes raring to go, scientists will use this as a chance to examine the planet’s atmosphere and gather clues that may lead to the discovery of new extra-solar planets.
Transits of Venus are so rare because the planet’s orbit is tilted relative to the Earth’s; the two planets line up with the sun only four times every 243 years.