Witness the Rare Conjunction of Venus & Jupiter Tonight – Catch it Now or Wait Until 2032!

For those who have been looking up at the night sky over the past weeks, they will have noticed two bright planets getting closer and closer together.[0] On Wednesday, March 1, these two planets, Venus and Jupiter, will meet in a rare conjunction, appearing close to one another despite the fact that they are actually 400 million miles apart.

This astronomical phenomenon is called a conjunction, which happens when multiple planets appear very close to one another in the night sky.[1] This conjunction has been likened to the two planets “kissing”, as Venus and Jupiter will be separated by the width of a pencil eraser held up at arms’ length in the sky.[2]

Wednesday evening was the best time to witness the conjunction of Jupiter and Venus in the United States; however, the two planets will still be visible close together in the sky on Thursday, the speaker mentioned.[3] The conjunction will be visible to the naked eye, and binoculars will provide a better view.[4]

At 6:58 p.m., NASA stated that the two planets would be visible in the western sky, above the horizon.[5] As evening twilight fades away on the East Coast of the United States, ET arrives.[6] Robert Massey, deputy executive director of the Royal Astronomical Society in the United Kingdom, stated that the two celestial bodies are predicted to be only half a degree away from each other, which is approximately the same width as a full moon.[7]

If you don’t have clear skies to view the convergence of Venus and Jupiter, the Virtual Telescope Project will be hosting a free telescope livestream of the event starting at 2:00 p.m.[8] 7:00 PM[9] Your local astronomy clubs may offer observing sessions that you can attend.[8]

In case you are unable to attend the event tonight, make sure to come back on Thursday night.[2] The two planets will remain in close proximity, continuing their celestial ballet.[3] Soon, they will return to keeping their distance.[2] The next time Venus and Jupiter will be this close together will be February 7, 2032.

0. “Skywatch: Jupiter and Venus dance, spring arrives and, with it, a farewell” The Washington Post, 26 Feb. 2023, https://www.washingtonpost.com/science/2023/02/26/skywatch-jupiter-venus-dance-spring-arrives-with-it-farewell/

1. “Not a UFO: Venus and Jupiter share a ‘kiss' in the night sky” TMJ4 News, 2 Mar. 2023, https://www.tmj4.com/news/local-news/not-a-ufo-venus-and-jupiter-share-a-kiss-in-the-night-sky

2. “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

3. “Union Station hosting watch party for rare cosmic event” KMBC Kansas City, 1 Mar. 2023, https://www.kmbc.com/article/union-station-watch-cosmic-event-jupiter-venus/43148446

4. “Planets to converge above Kansas, Missouri; here’s when” WDAF FOX4 Kansas City, 28 Feb. 2023, https://fox4kc.com/news/planets-to-converge-above-kansas-missouri-heres-when/

5. “You may want to keep your eyes on the sky Wednesday night” KTVB.com, 1 Mar. 2023, https://www.ktvb.com/article/tech/science/venus-jupiter-sky-wednesday-night-planets-approach-conjunction/277-9c0315b8-8bd3-4729-a488-e5ffdbd3bb47

6. “Jupiter and Venus to closely pass each other in night sky” WJCL News Savannah, 1 Mar. 2023, https://www.wjcl.com/article/jupiter-venus-in-night-sky-how-to-see/43141278

7. “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

8. “Jupiter and Venus to ‘join' in the evening sky on Wednesday” CBC, 27 Feb. 2023, https://www.cbc.ca/news/science/jupiter-venus-conjunction-1.6752232

9. “Watch the moon meet Venus and Jupiter in the sky tonight with free livestream” Space.com, 21 Feb. 2023, https://www.space.com/new-moon-venus-jupiter-conjunction-feb-2023

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