Jupiter, Saturn and Mercury will be a part of a chief celestial attraction as the three planets will come together into tight quarters. After 30 to 45 minutes post sundown, in the southwestern evening sky, viewers will be treated with a ‘triple conjunction’ as three planets will come in a circle smaller than 5 degrees. According to reports by Space.com, the three planets will be contained in the circle from January 8 to January 12. However, they will appear closer on the evening on January 10.
To get a perfect view, binoculars are strongly suggested. Jupiter will appear to be at the top of the triangle while Mercury and Saturn will be forming base angles. The sides of the triangle each measure roughly 2 degrees. This might also mark the last evening view of Jupiter and Saturn. However, Mercury will rise over in the coming days. In the evenings after Sunday, Saturn will disappear into the bright twilight first. This will be followed by Jupiter around the middle of the month.
In a similar incident, on December 21, in a rare conjunction, the two planets came closer than they have ever been since the Middle Ages, which is more than 400 years. The agency said that over the recent days, Jupiter and Saturn were doing a “planetary dance” that led to this “Great Conjunction”. Earlier on that day, NASA suggested that one must find a spot with an open view of the sky like a field or park to view the great conjunction unfold. NASA said as both the planets are bright, they can be viewed from most cities. The agency told that an hour after the sunset, one must look to the southwestern sky. While Jupiter will look like a bright star, Saturn, on the other hand, will be slightly faster and will appear slightly above and to the left of Jupiter. Let's have a look at people's view of the conjunction.
Such a phenomenon occurs only when one of the earth's poles has its maximum tilt away from the Sun. This conjunction has also been termed as 'The Christmas Star'. It took place after sunset in the south-western sky and it was seen with naked eyes. The last such conjunction was seen in 1623, however, it was not visible from most of the Earth. Now, the next ‘Great Conjunction’ will only happen 400 years later on November 4, 2040.