Venus Transit Conference

A group of scholars at the University of Tromsø will host a conference on the cultural and scientific history of the transits of Venus, in Tromsø 2-3 June 2012. The conference takes place in Tromsø for two reasons. First and foremost, the last transit of Venus of our century lends itself to be observed on the disc of the Midnight Sun in northernmost Norway, 5-6 June 2012. Second, several Venus transit expeditions in this region were central in the global enterprise of measuring the scale of the solar system in 1761 and 1769.

The site of the conference is the Science Centre of Northern Norway, which is located at the campus of the University of Tromsø. The University of the Arctic, along with the University of Tromsø, is sponsoring the conference. After the conference, participants will be invited to either stay in Tromsø until the midnight 5-6 June, or take part in a “Venus Transit Tour” in Finnmark, where we will visit the historical sites Vardø, Hammerfest, and the North Cape. The post-conference program culminates with the participants observing the transit of Venus in or near Tromsø or Vardø. In Tromsø, the town’s Astronomical Association will facilitate observation of the transit, whereas the other group will observe the event along with a local committee in Vardø. After the conference, a book will be edited by the organisers, based on papers presented at the conference.

Participation at the conference with a paper costs only NOK 150,- (approx. 20 Euro), and covers two nights at a hotel, food and lodging in Tromsø from Friday night 1 June to Sunday afternoon 3 June. Please note, however, that all expenses during the post-conference days will have to be covered by the participants themselves. Furthermore, travel to and from Tromsø should to be arranged and paid for by each participant individually.

Participation at the conference without a paper will cost NOK 600,- (approx. 80 Euro) and will cover lunch on Saturday and Sunday. Apart from these lunches, participants without a paper should be prepared to pay for food and lodging even during the days of the conference.

Click here to register (deadline for registration with a paper: 15 February 2012!)

or read the more elaborate Call for Papers.

Venus in transit, 4 June 2004. Photograph by David Cortner. Reproduced with permission.