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PLANETARY SPECTACULAR ON MONDAY MORNING

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Venus, Jupiter and the Moon in 2009. Image by ESO

Not only is it worth setting your alarm clock to make sure you pick up this week´s copy of The Leader, early risers on Monday will be able to experience an almost unique skyward experience, with the conjunction of Venus and Jupiter.

The morning of the 18th of August will see the two brightest planets in the sky, Jupiter, sitting slightly south of Venus, separated by just 17 arc minutes.

The vision will be just over half the diameter of the moon, according to astronomers, close to the star cluster M44, better known as the Praesepe or Beehive cluster.

The conjunction should be visible for about 75 minutes before the sun rises, near the horizon. Astronomers say that using a telescope or binoculars will give the most impressive view, but care must be taken once the sun rises. A position away from artificial lighting will also be the best choice, as modern light pollution means a lot of nature´s night-time beauty is often hidden from our gaze.

Filed under: http://www.theleader.info/article/44626/

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