Wednesday, August 17, 2022

look | Unique planetary alliance formed in space

Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn and the Moon hang above the horizon of Rome. (Photo: Virtual Telescope Project)

There are few incidents that take your breath away and amaze you with the mysterious ways our universe works. The sky of the earth is experiencing a similar phenomenon these days. Five planets of the solar system, separated by billions of kilometers, have appeared together in the sky above Earth.

Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn appeared in the pre-dawn skies in a rare planetary conjunction that would not repeat until 2040. The five planets come together as they move in their independent orbits around the Sun and form a straight line alignment. seen from earth.

Moon joined them, making the event even more special. What made it even more special was that the alignment could be seen with the naked eye and did not require high powered telescopes.

Astronomer Dr. Gianluca Masi of the Virtual Telescope Project managed to snap all five planets dancing with the Moon in the sky above Rome. The project under the Bellatrix Astronomical Observatory in Italy also did a webcast of the event.

See Rare Five Planet Combinations

“While such bright imaging of celestial bodies is generally easy, there are some important things to be considered in the case of such a parade: first, when aligning the planets with the ecliptic, the trajectory of Earth’s orbit into the sky. can cover several degrees in the sky (in this case more than 100); in addition, Mercury can be difficult to catch, being below the horizon and visible in the brightest region of the sky at twilight ,” said Dr. Gianluca Masi when he saw the heavenly image.

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In the Northern Hemisphere, rare planetary conjunctions were best visible between 45 and 90 minutes before sunrise. According to EarthSky, the planetary line extends south from sunrise as seen from the Northern Hemisphere to the north as seen from the Southern Hemisphere. The alignment has been occurring since June 10, when Mercury began to appear above the sunrise point, gradually separating itself from the Sun.

“The next time such an alignment will occur, in which the planets appear in the same order (Mercury to Saturn, for their distance from the Sun) will be in 2041,” Masi said.

Read also | Next stop Moon! Successful test of Artemis rocket, likely to launch in August

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
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