Venus, Jupiter to Converge This Weekend

Planets' conjunction best viewed early Saturday
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 27, 2022 2:58 PM CDT
Venus, Jupiter to Converge This Weekend
From left, planet Venus, the Moon and planet Jupiter are seen in the early morning sky photographed near Salgotarjan, northeast of Budapest, Hungary, Jan. 31, 2019.   (AP Photo)

Despite being millions of miles apart, Venus and Jupiter appear to meet in the night sky about once a year in what's known as a conjunction. But skywatchers who take in the sight this year are in for a real treat, as the planets will appear much closer than usual—at an apparent distance less than the diameter of the moon for some viewers, CNN reports. The planets will appear to move closer together until 3pm ET Saturday, when Venus will be 0.2 degrees south of Jupiter, per EarthSky. "For observers in the Americas, they will be separated by the same angular distance as a full moon" or 0.5 degrees, per the outlet.

For best viewing, turn your eyes east before Saturday's sunrise, per the Washington Post. "Venus will appear brighter and on the lower right of the tangoing planets, while Jupiter sidesteps just a bit above and to the left," the outlet reports. It notes Venus "will be brighter and yellowish," while Jupiter may have a reddish tinge. "Due to the glare from both planets, observers will see them merge into one very bright, spectacular glow!" according to NASA. After Sunday, the second and fifth planets from the sun—actually separated by a distance of some 430 million miles—will reverse position, then move apart. (More space stories.)

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