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Mercury transit begins at 4.43 p.m. in India

Mercury transit begins at 4.43 p.m. in India

New Delhi: Marking a rare astronomical event -- the Mercury transit, the planet Mercury crossing in front of the Sun, will be visible in India on Monday from 4.43 p.m. till sunset at 7.01 p.m. in Delhi.

"This is a rare astronomical event that takes place roughly only 10 times in a century. Last time it was sighted in 2006," Mukesh Sharma from Nehru Planetarium told IANS.

Cautioning against trying to see the Mercury Transit with the naked eye, Sharma said that a programme had been organised for people to see the celestial event using solar telescope.

"Venus stands between the earth and Mercury, so it's a rare moment when Mercury would directly come between the earth and the Sun. However, though much is known about the planet Mercury, the transit would still be useful for the researchers," said Sharma.

Mercury is the smallest, and the next planet to the Sun. It takes 88 earth days to orbit around the sun.

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