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The Conjunction on July 15th 2012

July 17, 2012  •  Leave a Comment

During June and July 2012 we could see a series of beautiful conjunctions between Venus, Jupiter and Aldebaran. July's 15th was the big show for the event as the Moon was going to join the conjunction. It was freezing cold and cloudy at my location but still we were able to get some photos of this nice celestial event.

The conjunction rose above the water of Rio de La Plata while the night was still dark. It's the middle of the winter in the south hemisphere and the nights are long and cold. Jupiter was the first to rise followed by the Moon and Venus. After a few minutes a beautiful "square" formed in the sky, just next to the pleiades cluster. You can see the pleiades on the left of this photo.

The Wide angle view shows how tight the conjunction was in the sky. Just to the next of the conjunction you will recognize Orion, maybe upside-down because I live in the South Hemisphere and just a palm to the right of Orion is Sirius, the brightest star in the Night Sky. You can see that Sirius is brighter than Aldebaran but Venus and Jupiter are much much brighter and the Moon tops them all. The clouds were not a problem they just created a natural difussion effect on the planets and stars. 

A few minutes before sunrise the conjunction was still easy to see with the naked eye. The clouds started to turn red and orange illuminated by the Sun still a few degrees below the horizon. The horns of the bull, Taurus are easy to see in this photo. 

A wide panorama just before sunrise. The brightest area of the horizon where a big boat is seen marks the point where the Sun is just about to rise. Sirius is still clearly visible at the right of the panorama ans can be compared to the brightness of the conjunction. With the sky turning in colors the conjunction looked even better. Sometimes clouds are friendly after all!

You can check my gallery for this conjunction here: http://www.luisargerich.com/july152012

2012 is a nice year for conjunctions and occultations, it was a good thing to be able to see and photograph this event even with some clouds.


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