My zoom shot of Venus and Jupiter

Visited with my friend Michael tonight... haven't seen him in a very long time. Michael is a song writer/singer/producer. Very talented indeed. I have his cds and press release information. Tomorrow he and I are working a story for my readers...

While at Michael's he told me about the 2012 Jupiter and Venus Conjunction. We went outside and were watching it while it was still daylight. My camera couldn't pick them up at that time. A few hours later they really popped in the night sky... thanks Michael xK

Venus and Jupiter have been dancing toward each other in the night sky for months, and they'll finally come together this week in a dazzling show for skywatchers.

Beginning Monday night, the two brightest planets in the sky will be so close together that you'll be able to block both of them out with a few fingers held at arm's length. The celestial action peaks Thursday, when Venus and Jupiter line up in what's known as a planetary conjunction.

Venus-Jupiter conjunctions are fairly special events, occurring roughly every 13 months. And this one should be the best conjunction for several years to come for viewers in the Northern Hemisphere, experts say, because the two planets will be visible for so long in the evening sky. At mid-northern latitudes on Thursday, the pair should blaze bright over the western horizon for about four hours after sunset.

Though Jupiter is about 11 times wider than the roughly Earth-size Venus, Venus shines much more brightly than the gas giant from our perspective — about eight times more brightly this week, in fact.

That's because Venus is much closer to us than Jupiter is. On average, Earth orbits 93 million miles (150 million kilometers) from the sun, a distance defined as 1 astronomical unit (AU). Venus zips around our star at about 0.72 AU, while Jupiter is found roughly 5.2 AU away from the sun.

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