On Monday, the ‘Christmas star’ appears in the sky for the first time in 800 years: how to see the great coincidence if the weather allows

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A phenomenon not seen for nearly 800 years will brighten the skies next week.

The two largest planets in the solar system will meet at a grand convention from time to time over Christmas, NASA said. It’s the same day as the winter solstice.

Known as the ‘Christmas Star’, it is a particularly impressive planetary system that will be easily visible in the evening sky over the next two weeks, while the bright planets Jupiter and Saturn come together on December 21. The nights are over, “NASA said on its website.

On Monday, Jupiter and Saturn will come closer and closer to each other, according to Space.com. The two planets rarely come together like other bright planets.

Jim Todd, Director of Space Science Education at MSI In the Portland area, he said I would like to go out only after sunset at 4:30 pm, when the planets and Saturn will be less. Todd said the planets will descend rapidly below the surface, so a good view of the southwest is needed, and people will need a timely view of the sky to catch it.

The Weather in Portland 70-80% chance of rain and mostly cloudy on Monday does not seem to be in line with the forecast.

For those who want to see the phenomenon for themselves, here’s what to do: NASA says:

  • Find smooth views of the sky, such as a field or a park. Jupiter and Saturn are bright, so they can be seen from most cities.
  • One hour after sunset, look at the southwest sky. Jupiter will look like a bright star and will be easily visible. Saturn will be slightly obscured and will appear slightly upwards and to the left of Jupiter until December 21, when Jupiter will overtake it and they will see the opposite position in the sky.
  • The planets can be seen with the naked eye, but if you have a telescope or a small telescope, you can see four huge moons orbiting the giant planet.
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The two planets merge every 20 years, but they are not always the same. From July 1623 there will be a Jupiter-Saturn pair on Monday, when the two planets appear a little closer. This combination was almost impossible to see, however, due to its proximity to the sun.

In a very close and clear view, the union of the two planets in March 1226 – when Genghis Khan was conquering Asia. Monday’s pair will be the closest pair to appear since then.

Too bright shining Jupiter’s upper right will be short, faint. Despite being visible, Jupiter and Saturn will actually be 450 million miles (730 million kilometers) apart. During this time, the Earth will be at a distance of 550 million miles (890 million kilometers) from Jupiter.

“On the 21st day, they will appear so close that a pink finger with an arm’s length will easily cover both planets in the sky,” NASA said. “With the help of the planets, it will be easier to look south-west after sunset.”

The best way to get a glimpse of a rare phenomenon is to look at it about an hour after sunset, according to NASA. The planets are visible to the naked eye.

“Jupiter will look like a bright star and will be easily visible,” NASA said. “Saturn will be a little dimmer and will be slightly higher and visible to the left of Jupiter until December 21, when Jupiter will overtake it and they will be reversed in the sky.”

The next time they come together in our sky it won’t be for 60 years, so it’s going to be a one-time lifeline for a lot of people. In fact, the last time they collected it was in years 1623, But it’s not impossible, so it was really difficult to see them because they looked very close to the sun and settled down soon after. To go back another 400 years 1226 And that would be the last time we had a good idea of ​​this kind of combination.

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What advice would you give to people who want to see great coincidences?

If you have a pair of binoculars, you can easily find both planets. Even with a small telescope, you can see both planets at the same time in the same field of view, which is not really audible. This is what makes this combination so rare.

If the weather allows Dior Observatory, The joint will be broadcast live from an observatory telescope.

The toss in Northern Golisfire in the solitude of winter, the longest night of the year – and the restraint of summer in the Southern Hemisphere – and the spectacle promises to be one of the greatest coincidences for Christmas time.

“What’s rare is very close to what happens in our night sky,” said David Wentrob, a professor of astronomy at Vanderbilt University. “I think it’s fair to say that such incidents can usually only happen once in a person’s lifetime, and I think ‘once in my lifetime’ is a good test of that. A quality is described as too little or too special. ”

Their next super-close pair: March 15, 2080.

– Kansas City Star, Associated Press, The Conversion

About the author: Raven Weber

Musicaholic. Unapologetic alcohol maven. Social media expert. Award-winning coffee evangelist. Typical thinker.

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