Mercury Transit of 2016: A Rare Celestial Sight Explained (Infographic)
On May 9, 2016, Mercury crosses the face of the sun in a solar transit. See how Mercury transits work in our full infographic here.
Credit: Alan Eilander/Space.com

On May 9, 2016, Mercury will pass directly between the Earth and sun in a rare solar transit. Mercury transits occur just 13 times every 100 years. 

The Mercury transit of 2016 will begin at 7:16 a.m. EDT (1116 GMT) and last more than seven hours, ending at 2:38 p.m. EDT (1838 GMT). 

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