ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Transit of Venus, Jamaica. This expedition travelled to Jamaica to observe the transit of Venus that took place on 6 December 1882. Such transits (where Venus passes across the Sun as seen from the Earth) are rare, occurring in pairs over 100 years apart. The 19th-century transits (1874 and 1882) saw numerous expeditions to make observations. The results helped establish the distances of Venus and the Sun, and hence the size of the solar system. The expedition to Jamaica, which carried out its observations successfully, was led by British astronomer Ralph Copeland (1837-1905), in the group at centre.
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