Venus and Jupiter This Morning, August 31, 2012

With a nearly full moon appearing low in the west, the bright Morning Stars Venus and Jupiter shine brightly among the stars in the eastern pre-dawn sky in this image made at 4:10 a.m. CDT from the Chicago area. Both planets can be seen well into bright morning twilight in the eastern sky, long after the stars are lost in the brilliance of the approaching sunrise.

Planet Venus is nearing its closest to the star Pollux tomorrow, separated by about 9 degrees; this is the size of your fist when your arm is extended. Pollux’s twin, Castor, is nearby.

Planet Jupiter shines among the stars of Taurus with its bright star Aldebaran. The Pleiades star cluster is just outside the top of the frame.

Watch the planetary pair in the morning sky throughout the next several months.  Read more about Venus as a Morning Star.  For our monthly sky watching posting, click here.  (Click the image to see it larger.)

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