After the Aurora Borealis, now two bright stars: Venus and Jupiter are closing in on each other and this is what it looks like
On Wednesday evening, two surprisingly bright points of light came even closer among the stars. With the rare “collaboration” of the planets Jupiter and Venus, celestial enthusiasts were treated to another treat, tracking the Northern Lights and a rare green comet.
Anyone who went out last night to see if the aurora lights would show up a third time was disappointed. The Northern Lights have moved towards Russia. However, the two bright planets close to each other like piercing eyes immediately stood out. On Wednesday night, they appear to be even more on a collision course. Seen from Earth, they are almost aligned. This is especially noticeable because they are the brightest objects in the starry sky – aside from the moon.
On the same line
“It may seem that Venus and Jupiter are very close to each other,” says Theo Mulder of the Orion Public Observatory in Bovenkarspel, “but in reality they are still hundreds of millions of kilometers apart. the other”.
Jupiter orbits the Sun in a much larger orbit than Venus and Earth. “But on Wednesday night, Venus passes in front of Jupiter, lining them up as seen from Earth.”
This conjunction of planets does not happen very often. At the end of April last year, they were seen even closer to each other. The next time they seem almost aligned again will be in 2039.
“You can just photograph the phenomenon with your mobile phone,” says Mulder. “The sun will set around six tonight, then you will have about an hour and a half to see the conjunction. It depends on where you are, because in the bustling city, planets may disappear behind rooftops. If you stand on open ground with a clear horizon, it is possible to see the planets for up to half past seven.
This is a special month for lovers of remarkable phenomena above our heads. On Monday and Tuesday, the Northern Lights could be seen with the naked eye in many dark places around the country. Earlier in February, with binoculars or a telescope, the green comet ZTF could already be seen near the constellation Orion: another phenomenon that does not occur every day.
Until Wednesday, Jupiter was the upper planet and Venus (the brighter of the two) was the lower. Since Thursday, as they move away from each other, it’s the opposite.
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