Witness the Rare Celestial Event of Jupiter and Venus in Conjunction on March 1 & 2

On March 1 and 2, two of the brightest planets in the night sky will come close together in a rare celestial event known as a conjunction.[0] Jupiter and Venus, the two biggest planets in our solar system, will appear almost close enough to touch, although they are actually 400 million miles apart.[1]

Venus is the brighter of the two, and will appear northwest of Jupiter. They will be separated by just half a degree, which is the width of two full moons or about half the width of your thumb at arm's length, according to the Adler Planetarium.[2]

Jupiter is the largest planet in our solar system, and appears so bright due to its great size and distance from Earth.[3] Venus appears so brightly due to its close proximity to Earth, its bright clouds, and its closeness to the Sun, reflecting a lot of the Sun's light into space.

The next closest conjunction will be on February 7, 2032. However, if you miss the event tonight, you still have a chance to catch them.[1] The two planets will still seem quite close together on Thursday and Friday night.[4] But soon, they will slowly drift apart, with Venus rising and Jupiter dropping toward the horizon and the Sun.[5]

The next full moon will occur on Tuesday, March 7, and that evening, Venus, Jupiter and Mars will all be visible in the night sky.[6]

2023 will also have two solar eclipses and two lunar eclipses. The solar eclipses will be a total eclipse on April 20 and an annular eclipse on Oct 14. The lunar eclipses will be a penumbral eclipse on May 5 and a partial eclipse of the hunter's moon on October 28.

Finally, mark your calendars with the peak dates of meteor showers to watch in 2023: Southern Taurids on November 4-5 and Northern Taurids on November 11-12, as well as the Geminids on December 13-14.[7]

Remember to wear proper eclipse glasses when viewing solar eclipses, as the sun's light can be damaging to the eye.[7] So get your binoculars and telescope ready, and enjoy the spectacle of two of the brightest planets in the night sky coming together.[8]

0. “Brightest planets Jupiter and Venus to convene in south-west sky” The Guardian, 27 Feb. 2023, https://www.theguardian.com/science/2023/feb/27/brightest-planets-jupiter-and-venus-to-convene-in-south-west-sky

1. “Look up! Venus and Jupiter are going in for a nighttime kiss” MPR News, 2 Mar. 2023, https://www.mprnews.org/story/2023/03/01/npr-look-up-venus-and-jupiter-are-going-in-for-a-nighttime-kiss

2. “What were those two lights close together in the sky last night?” WESH 2 Orlando, 2 Mar. 2023, https://www.wesh.com/article/lights-in-sky-venus-jupiter/43157961

3. “Venus and Jupiter” Stardate.org, 28 Feb. 2023, https://stardate.org/radio/program/2023-02-28

4. “What were the 2 lights in the sky Wednesday night?” WTOL, 2 Mar. 2023, https://www.wtol.com/article/tech/science/2-planets-lights-in-sky-venus-jupiter/512-abe193e8-21fc-4e5f-ba44-16a0fa9828f6

5. “Jupiter and Venus ‘kiss' in a stunning planetary conjunction tonight. Here's how to watch.” Livescience.com, 1 Mar. 2023, https://www.livescience.com/jupiter-and-venus-kiss-in-a-stunning-planetary-conjunction-tonight-heres-how-to-watch

6. “How to see Jupiter ‘kiss' Venus in the night sky” WKOW, 1 Mar. 2023, https://www.wkow.com/news/how-to-see-jupiter-kiss-venus-in-the-night-sky/article_f278e7cb-c217-53ea-8f18-eddefd605483.html

7. “Two planets will appear to ‘kiss' in the sky tonight” CNN, 1 Mar. 2023, https://www.cnn.com/2023/03/01/world/venus-jupiter-conjunction-how-to-see-scn/index.html

8. “NASA Astronomy Picture of the Day 5 March 2023: Spectacular meeting of Venus and Jupiter” HT Tech, 5 Mar. 2023, https://tech.hindustantimes.com/tech/news/nasa-astronomy-picture-of-the-day-5-march-2023-spectacular-meeting-of-venus-and-jupiter-71678006757089.html

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