Venus in the Daytime

With the Moon only a half a degree from Venus this morning, it should be relatively easy to spot the brilliant planet high in the daytime sky.

Crescent Venus
Venus approaching inferior conjunction, 24Dec2013

Spotting planets in the daytime is not that difficult, both Jupiter and Venus are bright enough to seen in full daylight. Venus is currently near maximum brilliance at about -4.3 magnitude, easily bright enough to see in a clear sky. There are a few helpful hints to make this easier.

Today the Moon will make finding Venus quite easy. The planet is only half a degree above the Moon, just above the slim crescent.  Keep in mind that the Moon is half a degree across, the planet will be half a Moon diameter above the unlit side, easy to spot in the mid-morning sky.  Having the Moon nearby will not only aid in locating the Planet, it will also provide your eyes something to focus on.

The Moon and Venus

e Moon, Venus and Aldebaran
The Moon, Venus and Aldebaran join up for an evening conjunction

Tomorrow morning will feature a very close pairing of a 15% crescent Moon and a brilliant Venus just
½° apart. The pair will be situated between Jupiter above and Saturn rising below.

The Moon is close to ½° across, thus the planet will lie quite close to the tip of a beautiful, slim crescent. Shining at a brilliant -4.2 magnitude the planet is also a match for the bright Moon.

A beautiful lineup of Moon and planets should make it worth the effort to rise early and enjoy the pre-dawn spectacle.

Venus at Maximum Elongation

Crescent Venus
Venus approaching inferior conjunction, 24Dec2013

Today Venus is passing through maximum elongation, the highest elevation it will attain in the dawn sky for this apparition.

The planet is currently 47° ahead of the rising Sun. After today the brilliant planet will slide back into the glow of dawn headed for superior conjunction on August 13th, and an evening apparition starting in mid-September.

The Moon and Venus

Tomorrow morning, July 20th, a pretty crescent Moon will be located close to a brilliant Venus. The Moon will be a slim 11% crescent a little over 4° from Venus shining at -4.0 magnitude. The pair will rise about three hours before sunrise a bit before 2am, look for the two above the brightening glow of dawn.

e Moon, Venus and Aldebaran
The Moon, Venus and Aldebaran join up for an evening conjunction

The Moon and Venus

Tomorrow morning, June 20th, a pretty crescent Moon will be located close to a brilliant Venus. The Moon will be a slim 18% crescent a little under 6° from Venus shining at -4.2 magnitude. The pair will rise about three hours before sunrise at about 2am, look for the two above the brightening glow of dawn.

e Moon, Venus and Aldebaran
The Moon, Venus and Aldebaran join up for an evening conjunction

Venus at Maximum Elongation

Today Venus is at maximum elongation, as high in the dawn sky as it will get for this morning apparition, about 45.9°. After today the planet will begin its slide back into the glare of dawn. It will disappear from view around the end of the year and reach superior conjunction on January 8th, 2018.

As Earth and Venus race about the Sun, Venus will complete about one cycle of appearances each year. We can expect one evening apparition and one morning apparition to occur in 2017.

Continue reading “Venus at Maximum Elongation”

The Moon and Venus

Tomorrow morning, May 22nd, a pretty crescent Moon will be located close to a brilliant Venus. The Moon will be a slim 15% crescent a little over 3° from Venus shining at -4.4 magnitude. The pair will rise about two hours before sunrise at about 3am, look for the two above the brightening glow of dawn.

e Moon, Venus and Aldebaran
The Moon, Venus and Aldebaran join up for an evening conjunction

The Moon and Venus

Tomorrow morning, April 23rd, a pretty crescent Moon will be located close to a brilliant Venus. The Moon will be a slim 12% crescent a little over 7° from Venus shining at -4.3 magnitude. The pair will rise about an hour before sunrise at about 4am, look for the two just above the brightening glow of dawn.

e Moon, Venus and Aldebaran
The Moon, Venus and Aldebaran join up for an evening conjunction

Venus Appears in the Dawn

The bright planet Venus will appear in the dawn sky over the next couple weeks, climbing higher to become the morning star for the remainder of 2017. It is currently 15° from the Sun and shining at magnitude -4.3, bright enough to be seen against the dawn sky. It will reach maximum elongation on June 3rd, 46° ahead of the rising Sun.

Venus Events for 2017

  Date UT Separation Mag
Maximum Elongation Jan 12 47.1°E -4.4
Inferior Conjunction Mar 25    
Maximum Elongation Jun 3 45.9°W -4.3
 
Source: NASA Sky Calendar