2018, March 2: Venus and Mercury, The Evening Show, Episode 2

Brilliant Venus and Mercury shine during twilight this evening, the day before their conjunction.  Both planets are emerging into the evening sky after their superior conjunctions.  This is Mercury’s best evening appearance this year. This evening the are 1.2 degrees apart.  Tomorrow evening they stand side-by-side, about one degree apart; that’s about the size of your thumbnail at arm’s length.

Mercury zips past Venus and goes higher in the sky.  It reaches its greatest separation from the sun, then it dives back toward the sun.  Mercury passes Venus again on March 18.  By then, the waxing crescent moon joins the pair.

The articles that follow provide details about the planets visible without optical assistance (binoculars or telescope):

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