Venus to Hug Jupiter in Crazy-Close Conjunction
For the next few nights, be sure to make a special effort to go outside at twilight and look West - if you live in the Northern Hemisphere and have clear skies. You see those two bright stars really (and I mean really) close to one another? Those aren't stars, they're two planets, Venus and Jupiter, making a wonderfully close pass in the night sky.
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Known as a conjunction, the pair are set to come less than 1/3 of a degree apart on the evening of June 30, but for the next week you'll be able to see the evening pairing within 3° of one another. For the past few days they have been slowly creeping up on one another, becoming the focus of skywatchers.
As noted by Sky & Telescope magazine, conjunctions between Venus and Jupiter aren't particularly rare - indeed, the two worlds met even in our skies last August and will do again in October - but they are a stunning sight. As an added bonus, if you you're armed with a telescope or powerful pair of binoculars, you may be able to pick out Venus' crescent.
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So get out there and watch tonight's celestial dance just after sunset. Weather permitting, you won't be disappointed.
For more details behind the conjuntion and opportunities for viewing, see this handy Astronomy.com guide.