Transit of Venus Sundial

TonyCrehan

Hobart, Australia

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Artist's Description

This sundial in the park opposite The Grange at Campbell Town, Tasmania is a very popular hands on sculpture with kids of all ages.

It was designed and built by Anthony Sprent in 2004 to commemorate the transit of the planet Venus across the face of the Sun, first observed here by scientists from the United States Naval Observatory in 1874.

A pair of transits eight years apart occurs approximately every 120 years.

The first transit of the current pair took place on 8th June 2004 and the second will be next year in 2012.

The sundial is made from old agricultural machinery parts from rural properties around Campbell Town.

To use the sundial, you sit in the seat and rotate the hand-wheel until the plough disc is facing the sun. you then adjust the disc until the light of the sun is shining on the line of dots engraved nearest the current month of the year.

The date is found by counting the dots from where the month begins on the disc to the one where the sun is shining. the time of day in hours and minutes is read from the scale on the outside of the big wheel where the vertical marker meets it.

I was impressed to see that it was accurate to the minute and even took into account daylight saving time from October to March.

Featured 04/12/11 in Garden Sculptures and Ornaments http://www.redbubble.com/groups/garden-sculptures-and-ornaments Group

Featured 05/09/11 in Statues and Such http://www.redbubble.com/groups/statues Group

Taken with Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH1 point & shoot.

Artwork Comments

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