APOD: An Evening Sky Conjunction (2015 Feb 20)

Comments and questions about the APOD on the main view screen.
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APOD Robot
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APOD: An Evening Sky Conjunction (2015 Feb 20)

Post by APOD Robot » Fri Feb 20, 2015 5:06 am

Image An Evening Sky Conjunction

Explanation: Eight years ago, an evening sky held this lovely pairing of a young crescent Moon and brilliant Venus. Seen near the western horizon, the close conjunction and its wintry reflection were captured from Bolu, Turkey, planet Earth on February 19, 2007. In the 8 Earth years since this photograph was taken Venus has orbited the Sun almost exactly 13 times, so the Sun and Venus have now returned to the same the configuration in Earth's sky. And since every 8 years the Moon also nearly repeats its phases for a given time of year, a very similar crescent Moon-Venus conjunction will again appear in planet Earth's evening skies tonight. But the February 20, 2015 version of the conjunction will also include planet Mars. Much fainter Mars will wander even closer to Venus by the evening of February 21.

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smitty
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Re: APOD: An Evening Sky Conjunction (2015 Feb 20)

Post by smitty » Fri Feb 20, 2015 10:47 am

Beautiful! This looks like a Maxfield Parrish painting!

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Re: APOD: An Evening Sky Conjunction (2015 Feb 20)

Post by Nitpicker » Fri Feb 20, 2015 10:59 am

Good timing and a lovely image. The Moon and Venus haven't aged a bit. Wish I could say the same of myself. (Surely just a coincidence that I married a love goddess not long after this image was taken.)

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Ann
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Re: APOD: An Evening Sky Conjunction (2015 Feb 20)

Post by Ann » Fri Feb 20, 2015 12:13 pm

Nitpicker wrote:Good timing and a lovely image. The Moon and Venus haven't aged a bit. Wish I could say the same of myself. (Surely just a coincidence that I married a love goddess not long after this image was taken.)
Well, congrats, Nit! :D

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Re: APOD: An Evening Sky Conjunction (2015 Feb 20)

Post by starsurfer » Fri Feb 20, 2015 12:31 pm

Nitpicker wrote:Good timing and a lovely image. The Moon and Venus haven't aged a bit. Wish I could say the same of myself. (Surely just a coincidence that I married a love goddess not long after this image was taken.)
Was her name Aphrodite by any chance? :D :wink:

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MarkBour
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Re: APOD: An Evening Sky Conjunction (2015 Feb 20)

Post by MarkBour » Fri Feb 20, 2015 5:01 pm

I wonder if an image of the three bodies would be able to show a difference in the phases.

I know that even if they all look right in line at some point, Mars will be farther away from and Venus closer to the Sun than the Moon, so they should not have identical crescents. But I wonder how subtle the difference would be. Perhaps imperceptible.
Mark Goldfain

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Nitpicker
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Re: APOD: An Evening Sky Conjunction (2015 Feb 20)

Post by Nitpicker » Fri Feb 20, 2015 10:27 pm

MarkBour wrote:I wonder if an image of the three bodies would be able to show a difference in the phases.

I know that even if they all look right in line at some point, Mars will be farther away from and Venus closer to the Sun than the Moon, so they should not have identical crescents. But I wonder how subtle the difference would be. Perhaps imperceptible.
It would have to be a very large array of small pixels on a sensor to show the phases of all three in a single image. Well beyond my budget. (Once could assemble a mosaic, of course.)

Mars, being a superior planet, never shows anywhere close to crescent phase to us. And inferior Venus is more distant from us than the Sun at the moment, so will also show in a very gibbous phase.

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DavidLeodis
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Re: APOD: An Evening Sky Conjunction (2015 Feb 20)

Post by DavidLeodis » Sat Feb 21, 2015 12:44 pm

I feel very old based on my Mercury age :( though based on my Pluto age I'm still almost a foetus :). In case you wonder what on Earth I'm going on about use the "Earth years since" link in the explanation. :ssmile:

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Re: APOD: An Evening Sky Conjunction (2015 Feb 20)

Post by starsurfer » Sat Feb 21, 2015 2:48 pm

Oh the Universe is filled with so many heavenly bodies! :wink: :D