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NASA Captures Mercury Flying Across the Sun

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Mercury just passed between the Earth and the Sun yesterday, a rare “planetary transit” that occurs about 13 times every 100 years. NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) spacecraft shot highly detailed photos of the astronomical event, and the beautiful time-lapse above is what resulted.

Here are some still photos of Mercury zipping across the face of the Sun:

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The planet Mercury is seen in silhouette, lower third of image, as it transits across the face of the sun Monday, May 9, 2016, as viewed from Boyertown, Pennsylvania.  Mercury passes between Earth and the sun only about 13 times a century, with the previous transit taking place in 2006.  Photo by NASA/Bill Ingalls.
The planet Mercury is seen in silhouette, lower third of image, as it transits across the face of the sun Monday, May 9, 2016, as viewed from Boyertown, Pennsylvania. Mercury passes between Earth and the sun only about 13 times a century, with the previous transit taking place in 2006. Photo by NASA/Bill Ingalls.

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Photo by NASA/Joel Kowsky.
Photo by NASA/Joel Kowsky.

Image credits: Video and photos by NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center/Genna Duberstein

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