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Evening sky after sunset
 On the left, at the end of February, before the closest approach, on the right, at the beginning of March, after the closest approach
Source: Ján Svoreň

Venus and Jupiter will seemingly touch in the sky

27. 2. 2023 | 11261 visits

The turn of February and March 2023 offers an interesting celestial phenomenon. During these days, a gradual approach of Venus and Jupiter − the conjunction of the two brightest planets − is visible from Earth This cosmic phenomenon can also be observed with the naked eye. Its peak will occur in the evening after sunset on March 1 and 2, 2023.

The conjunction of two astronomical objects occurs when they have the same longitude coordinate in the sky as seen from Earth. Planet approaches occur regularly because their orbits lie close to the plane of the Earth's orbit around the Sun.

Conjunctions of Venus with Jupiter occur on average once every 13 months.  This year, both planets are visible in the evening twilight in late February and early March, setting 3 hours after the Sun. Jupiter will form a striking configuration with Venus during the first two days of March.

"Brighter Venus will be less than 1 degree north of Jupiter. They will seemingly almost touch,"Ján Svoreň from the Astronomical Institute SAS describes the interesting event, and adds that when using a small telescope, observers will see 4 bright points in one line - its largest moons - in the vicinity of Jupiter.

If the right conditions are met, up to three conjunctions of Jupiter and Venus can occur in one year. “Once in a while, when Venus is close to the position between the Earth and the Sun, it makes an apparent loop in the sky, and if Jupiter is also close at that time, the triple conjunction can take place over 4 months. The closest one is supposed to happen in the spring and summer of 2036," explains the astronomer.

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