Venus, Jupiter Get Closer Together

Venus, Jupiter Get Closer Together
Venus-Jupiter Christian Schneebeli / Flickr CC BY-ND 2.0
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Venus and Jupiter, both bright planets in our solar system, has gotten nearer and nearer to each other.

Advertisement reports that since the start of June, the two planets have been separated by 21 degrees. Stretch your hand and form a fist. Now look at it. That’s worth 10 degrees. So the distance between Venus and Jupiter used to be worth two fists. Each evening, though, they got closer by about 0.7 degrees.

On June 30, Venus and Jupiter were 0.33 degrees apart, or as space experts say, 20 arc minutes.

No panic should be generated, though, as the occurrence could only produce a mere spectacle for the eyes rather than an apocalyptic scenario. The event is a rare one. Jean Meeus, an expert in calculating motions of the planets, say that it happens at “mean intervals of 13 months.”

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But Joe Rao, an instructor and guest lecturer at Hayden Planetarium in New York, writes, “Looking into the future, I’ve found that over the next 100 years, up until the year 2115, Venus and Jupiter come to within 20 arc minutes or less of each other just 26 times. In fact, on November 22, 2065, Venus will actually appear to cross in front of Jupiter!”

Had the event occur near the sun, it could’ve produced a more dazzling feasts for sky fans. But at a far 8 degrees, sadly, this is not the case.

Star-spotters in New Zealand were in for a treat when they were able to get a glimpse of the two planets dancing like partners in a galactic ball. The said phenomenon will be seen on Wednesday and Thursday as well, depending of the quality of the sky during those times.

Source: Ekant Veer / YouTube