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The bright planets on view


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Posted
  • Location: Irlam
  • Location: Irlam

Superb at the moment for observing the planets with Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn all visible to the naked eye at the moment. Jupiter and Saturn make their closest approach to each other, visually, as seen from Earth in the week before Christmas since 1623 and Mars makes its closest orbital approach to Earth at the start of October.  Venus is a pre dawn object.

Venus and the Moon yesterday morning

 

My dad took these footage

Mars, quite a bit of atmospheric distortion

Saturn 

 

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Posted
  • Location: Skirlaugh, East Yorkshire
  • Location: Skirlaugh, East Yorkshire

Its such a shame its been such a long period of dull weather and poor seeing. Jupiter and Saturn are positioned poorly low on the horizon at the moment so most of the time it has been a struggle to get much better than 150x in a telescope. Mars is higher in the sky and better for this, though atmospheric conditions haven't even been great for that. Uranus isn't too far away from Mars either, so with binoculars or better it can be found using Mars and nearby stars as a reference.

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Posted
  • Location: Skirlaugh, East Yorkshire
  • Location: Skirlaugh, East Yorkshire

Speaking of which, seeing is excellent tonight. There's a good view of Saturn and two of its Moons plus Jupiter and all four Galilean moons right now. It was clear at 185x and even pretty good at 266x. Might be the last night in a while that allows it.

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  • 3 weeks later...
Posted
  • Location: East Lothian
  • Weather Preferences: Not too hot, excitement of snow, a hoolie
  • Location: East Lothian

Mars reaches Opposition tonight,  13th. Cloud cover is rather mixed over the UK but have been some stunning views in past week. https://blogs.nasa.gov/Watch_the_Skies/2020/10/09/its-all-about-mars-in-october/?utm_source=TWITTER&utm_medium=NASA&utm_campaign=NASASocial&linkId=101703654

 

marsopp.png

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  • 3 weeks later...
Posted
  • Location: Near Beverley, East Yorks. (5 metres a.s.l.)
  • Weather Preferences: Something good in all four seasons
  • Location: Near Beverley, East Yorks. (5 metres a.s.l.)

Yes, a very lovely 'blue' moon tonight.  A clear view for me just now.
Nice shots Weather History , thanks 

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  • 4 weeks later...
Posted
  • Location: East Lothian
  • Weather Preferences: Not too hot, excitement of snow, a hoolie
  • Location: East Lothian

Saturn and Jupiter, about 16:50 today #GreatConjunction

Full moon this morning, reports of Corona this evening on twitter (rainbow rings) https://cloudatlas.wmo.int/en/corona.html 

 

conjunction3.JPG

moonspook.JPG

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Posted
  • Location: Rossland BC Canada
  • Location: Rossland BC Canada

Closest approach (visually from earth) of Jupiter and Saturn will occur on the 21st. A few days before that the crescent new moon will pass them (going beneath them) so if you have any chance of a view, 16th to 18th will look quite spectacular with the moon involved. 

Apparently this will be the closest conjunction (visually) until the 29th century AD.

There are conjunctions of the two largest outer planets every 19.86 years, at somewhat irregular spacing as the two planets both have considerably elliptical orbits (more so than earth, less so than Mars or Mercury). These group themselves in three families that each get a few days later (on average) every sixty years, so the current set with the planets having summer oppositions run back through 1961, 1901, 1841 etc, each time the planets have moved forward in their orbits slightly so that eventually this summer series reaches a similar point to the late autumn opposition series we have seen going back from 2000 to 1941, 1881, 1821 etc. A third set place the two planets (in recent conjunctions) in mid-spring (1981, 1921, 1861, 1802 etc).

Eventually over the course of about 747 to 807 years each of these three sets reaches the forward position of another set currently speaking. This is why it will be so long until another similar conjunction occurs. It is closer than others because at this point in their orbits, Jupiter and Saturn also have similar inclinations (departures above or below, in this case below, the earth's orbital plane). 

There must theoretically be times when they could pass even closer. Each case is somewhat different because earth's angle to their heliocentric conjunction varies. This past year, we passed Jupiter around July 14 then Saturn around July 20. It took until October for Jupiter to make up that differential as it moves only 2.5 times as fast as Saturn in terms of angles swept out. I use a concept called "EOD" (earth opposition date) to make visualization easier. The July 14 orbital position of Jupiter was EOD July 14. The July 20 orbital position of Saturn was July 20. But it took Jupiter until July 27 to move one day forward in the EOD timetable (to July 15) and after about three months it had reached EOD July 22. Saturn requires about 25 days to gain one EOD day, and moves forward about 13-14 EOD days each year. So in the period July 14 to October 15, Jupiter gained 9 days, Saturn 3 and they each arrived at EOD July 23.

At that time, there was a heliocentric conjunction but earth was almost at a right angle to it in our orbit and so from our perspective Jupiter had not yet caught up to Saturn. It still has not (from earth's perspective) but the gap is rapidly narrowing as we swing in towards the point where the two planets will each disappear behind the Sun's glow for a couple of months. Jupiter has reached EOD July 31 and Saturn July 26. When we pass the closest visual separation in three weeks, it will be August 2 and July 27. The geometry is never the same for succeeding 60 year events, sometimes there will be a series of two or three close conjunctions and other times just one, especially if their heliocentric conjunction is at a time like this event, when we're at right angles after passing each of them in the order fast Jupiter, slow Saturn (if it were the other way round, there would have been another close conjunction before the summer oppositions). 

Mars and Jupiter have a resonance of about 2.3 years that takes five sets around a slow-moving set of forward moving conjunctions. These reset fairly quickly, it takes about 47 years to run through one set and reach the next one in the group. The period of this is remarkably similar to the QBO so I did some number crunching and found a bit of a temperature signature in long-term daily records matching the Mars-Jupiter resonance, possibly some sort of pulsating effects within the solar system magnetic field. The signal was not as large as the QBO itself though, indicating it can't be more than a background factor. 

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Posted
  • Location: Near Beverley, East Yorks. (5 metres a.s.l.)
  • Weather Preferences: Something good in all four seasons
  • Location: Near Beverley, East Yorks. (5 metres a.s.l.)

  Yes, a lovely sight already.  Looking forward to Dec 21st and hoping for clear skies around that date.
Here's another good info. link

https://earthsky.org/astronomy-essentials/great-jupiter-saturn-conjunction-dec-21-2020

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Posted
  • Location: East Lothian
  • Weather Preferences: Not too hot, excitement of snow, a hoolie
  • Location: East Lothian
On 02/12/2020 at 09:41, Beverley Lass said:

  Yes, a lovely sight already.  Looking forward to Dec 21st and hoping for clear skies around that date.
Here's another good info. link

https://earthsky.org/astronomy-essentials/great-jupiter-saturn-conjunction-dec-21-2020

This has some nice visuals in it https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dbVpl9UYzHU  from Exeter Uni 

decGconjuctmap3.png

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Posted
  • Location: East Lothian
  • Weather Preferences: Not too hot, excitement of snow, a hoolie
  • Location: East Lothian

two weeks apart .

It has been worth going out beforehand to iron out various things. It was windy from the SW tonight, that wasn't fun.

decGnasa4.png
WWW.NETWEATHER.TV

Jupiter and Saturn will be aligned by December 21st and the closest for 400 years. You can already spot the giant gas planets in the early evening sky, edging together when the cloud shifts.

 

 

 

part2.jpg

Edited by Jo Farrow
photo swap
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Posted
  • Location: Bratislava, Slovakia
  • Location: Bratislava, Slovakia

Nice photos. I tried to take some of my own earlier but Saturn wouldn't show up. I don't remember seeing two planets this close before. 

Mars is still bright as well though noticeably less so than a couple of months back during opposition.

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Posted
  • Location: East Lothian
  • Weather Preferences: Not too hot, excitement of snow, a hoolie
  • Location: East Lothian
12 hours ago, Weather-history said:

 

That's lovely with the trees

1412both.JPG

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