Here’s How You Can See Venus And Saturn ‘kiss’ In A Rare Celestial Event
Posted December 10, 2019 9:45 a.m. EST
Updated December 11, 2019 7:00 a.m. EST
Look up Tuesday, Dec. 10 at around dusk, and you’ll be able to spot Venus, our closest celestial neighbor, appearing right next to Saturn, the ringed planet.
The two planets will appear within 1.8 degrees of each other — a space less than the size of two full moons.
This event is called a conjunction, which happens when two astronomical bodies appear to come close together in the sky.
If you happen to miss this rare event, you’ll still be able to spot them again on Wednesday night when they’re still only 1.9 degrees from each other.
After Wednesday, however, the two planets begin to drift farther and farther apart.
The rare sight these next couple of nights is all just a line-of-sight illusion — one that won’t occur again until February 5, 2021, and then March 29, 2022.
To spot the two planets, head outside just after sunset, and look to the southwest. Both planets will appear just 11 degrees above the horizon.
You won’t need a telescope or binoculars to see the two planets unless you want to see Saturn’s rings.
While both planets appear to be close in the night sky the next couple of nights, they’re actually more than 800 million miles apart.
Later this month, two celestial features close to the Earth will also be roughly 2 degrees apart. On Dec. 28, Venus will seem to be perched atop a thin crescent moon.
Will you go outside and see this exciting astronomical event for yourself?