Not every night comes with great connections, events like this happen once in a lifetime.
Jupiter and Saturn are scheduled to align with the night sky next week Excellent connection – This year some call it the “Christmas Star” – the closest such event in almost 400 years.
Both planets may appear as bright spots of light when viewed with the naked eye, with some stellar scenes describing them as an elongated star or a double planet. Telescopes should be large enough to show a division between the two, while a telescope can reveal Saturn’s rings, Jupiter’s belts and the moons of both planets at a single glance.
The astronomical event will take place on Monday 21st December, the first day of winter. Jim Todd, director of space science education at OMSI, said people in the Portland area would like to go out after sunset at 4:30 pm, when Jupiter and Saturn will be less in the sky.
The planets will quickly set below the horizon, Todd said, so a good view of the southwest horizon is essential, and people need to look up at the sky just in time to catch it.
Like all astronomical events in the fall and winter, the cloud obscures whether those in the Pacific Northwest really get a glimpse. National Weather Service Currently forecast Chance of clouds and rain on Monday in the Portland area.
Winter solstice is a time of spiritual significance, just as Christmas is approaching. Some refer to the planetary arrangement as the “Christmas star”, referring to the star of Bethlehem from the biblical account of Jesus’ birth. Although the two planets appear to be a point of light, they are actually separate.
Although major conjunctions of Jupiter and Saturn occur once every 20 years, it is very rare to get this good view. The best link of the year will be the one closest to 1623 and the largest link to the closest seen since 1226. The next very close big merger is expected to take place in 2080.
Most planetary alignments are simply called connections, but astronomers refer to the alignment of Jupiter and Saturn – the two largest planets in our solar system – as a “perfect fusion”. The two planets are only about 1 degree apart in our sky, but they are actually 455,762,323 miles apart, Todd said.
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