NASA’s Gorgeous Timelapse Of The Mercury Transit Will Make You Feel So Small

On 9 May 2016, Mercury passed directly between the Sun and Earth. This event, which is called a transit, happens about 13 times each century.

NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, or SDO, is a satellite in an inclined geosynchronous orbit about the Earth that studies the Sun 24/7 and captured the entire seven-and-a-half-hour event.

This composite image of Mercury’s journey across the Sun above was created with visible-light images from the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager on SDO.

While watching the following time-lapse video, bear in mind that Mercury is the smallest planet in the solar system with a diameter of 3030 miles (4880 kilometres), just 38 percent the size of the Earth.

The Sun has a diameter of 864,600 miles (1,391,400 kilometres) — in excess of 285 times the diameter of Mercury.

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