10 March 2012

Jupiter and Venus in Conjunction

The gradual changes that occur in the night sky are generally imperceptible to all but the most thorough observer. So at special times like this week, when we have a close-encounter of two of the brightest objects in the sky, we are able to see the grand pace of the Solar System at work in our own backyards. Jupiter and Venus, the two brightest objects in the night sky after the Sun and Moon, reach conjunction this week and fill the western sky with their brilliance. The chart shows the relative change each night, as Venus, much closer to the Earth, swings around in its orbit higher into our evening sky, while distant Jupiter drops a bit lower each night in comparison. It's one of those times that it will be very obvious and easy to see the change of planetary position from one night to the next.

Image courtesy of Sky and Telescope Magazine.

4 comments:

bestbeeb said...

I've looked at those the past two nights and they are really amazing!

The Urban Astronomer said...

Glad you saw this, Bestbeeb. I had a great view Sunday, but now we're clouded out in San Francisco. Soak it in !
-- Paul

Kioni said...

I live in New Delhi, and blessed to have a clear night sky every evening. The progression of what looks like Jupiter "passing" Venus in their chasing the sun after it set has been great. I'm going to go see if I can catch all 5 again togight.

Kioni said...

Again a great viewing night from New Delhi, India.