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Published 12th March 2012 by

The brightest planets in the solar system line up in the sky and you can spot conjunctions with just your eyes. Wrap up warm, head outside and look!

When two or more planets appear to be close in the sky, as seen from Earth, it is called a conjunction. They are not actually close, just as the stars in the sky are not close, but our vantage point on Earth makes them appear to be in the same area.

The other types on conjunctions occur between Earth and either Mercury or Venus, which are the two planets closer to the Sun than we are. Either of those two planets are said to be in superior conjunction when they are on the same side of the Sun as Earth and are on a line drawn from Earth to the Sun. They are said to be at inferior conjunction when they are on the opposite side of the Sun from Earth and are on a line drawn from Earth through the Sun.

Planetary conjunctions are always fun to see and can be a very useful means of reaching the general public with news about astronomy. Almost every year has a few interesting conjunctions

If you have a pair of binoculars, then its worth taking a look, especially when Jupiter and Saturn are close together. You should be able to see four of Jupiter's moons (Ganymede, Callistio, Io and Europa) and possibly the ring of Saturn.

Don't miss these opportunities for some great views of beautiful conjunctions!

Conjunctions of Planets in 2019

The list below presents instances when two planets reach the same right ascension during 2019.

DateTime UTCPlanetAngle distancePlanetElongation to Sun
January 13, 201910:48:09Mercury1°43'Saturn10.1° West
January 22, 201905:47:42Venus2°26'Jupiter45.9° West
February 13, 201920:06:54Mars1°03'Uranus64.4° East
February 18, 201913:54:15Venus1°05'Saturn42.7° West
February 19, 201911:09:52Mercury46'Neptune15.1° East
March 22, 201906:18:30Mercury3°24'Neptune13.5° West
April 2, 201918:54:11Mercury23'Neptune25.5° West
April 10, 201903:52:24Venus18'Neptune32.6° West
May 8, 201908:12:50Mercury1°23'Uranus14.1° West
May 18, 201908:12:13Venus1°09'Uranus23.2° West
June 19, 201914:34:40Mercury14'Mars24.4° East
July 7, 201913:33:33Mercury3°50'Mars18.4° East
July 24, 201910:32:05Mercury5°43'Venus5.8° West
August 24, 201912:34:05Venus19'Mars3.1° East
September 3, 201910:44:25Mercury42'Mars1.1° West
September 13, 201921:35:21Mercury20'Venus8.5° East
October 30, 201908:29:03Mercury2°43'Venus20.3° East
November 24, 201914:00:35Venus1°24'Jupiter26.2° East
December 11, 201904:42:34Venus1°49'Saturn30° East

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