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Media Advisory: Observe the Transit of Venus at Johns Hopkins University Astrophysics Event

TO: Assignment editors, reporters, producers

FROM: Lisa DeNike/443-845-3148 (cell) and 443-287-9960 (office) or Lde@jhu.edu

RE: Johns Hopkins hosts a viewing of the transit of Venus

WHEN: beginning at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, June 5

WHERE: Bloomberg Center for Physics and Astronomy, 3799 San Martin Drive, Baltimore, 21218

In the late afternoon and early evening of Tuesday, June 5, a once-in-a-lifetime spectacle will unfold in the heavens: Venus will slowly travel across the face of the Sun.

This phenomenon happens only once every 130 years, so the Maryland Space Grant Observatory and Johns Hopkins University are inviting star gazers of every experience level to an event that not only will allow them to view the transit, but also to learn more about it.

At 5 p.m., Nobel Prize winning astrophysicist Adam Riess, professor in the Henry A. Rowland Department of Physics and Astronomy at The Johns Hopkins University, and Peter McCullough, associate astronomer at the Space Telescope Science Institute, will each give a short talk in Schafler Auditorium about the importance of transits in cosmology and astronomy.

From 6 p.m. until sunset, observers can watch the transit unfold in one of several ways. The Space Grant Observatory’s telescope will be open, and will project the transit onto paper to protect viewers’ eyes. In addition, several personal, smaller telescopes also will be set up on the roof of the Bloomberg Center for people’s use. Finally, as the astronomical event unfolds, it will be projected onto a screen in the Schafler Auditorium during a live feed from Hawaii.

All events will be held in the Bloomberg Center for Physics and Astronomy on the Homewood campus.

For directions to the Homewood campus and a map, go here:

http://webapps.jhu.edu/jhuniverse/information_about_hopkins/visitor_information/

For more information about the Maryland Space Grant Consortium and Observatory, go here:

http://md.spacegrant.org/index.php?page=maryland-space-grant-observatory

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