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January 27, 2007

Sunset With Venus


Say hello to the first sunset picture of 2007, and look! As an extra added bonus, there's Venus, saying hello. This is the first really clear sunset we've had in a while, which is kind of frustrating for me, since I had been hoping to see Comet McNaught earlier in the month. I suppose I may have a chance again once the comet gets a little bit of a distance from the sun again. In the meantime Venus is putting on a pretty nice show.

Posted by john at January 27, 2007 12:18 AM

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Mike Scott | January 27, 2007 01:52 AM

I'm afraid McNaught is going to stay below the ecliptic now that it's rounded the sun, and will never again be visible from the northern hemisphere.

John Scalzi | January 27, 2007 01:55 AM

That bastard!

Byron | January 27, 2007 03:07 AM

Clearly, you need a gig in Australia or New Zealand right quick.

David Goldfarb | January 27, 2007 06:09 AM

Someone on Making Light said they managed to see McNaught in daylight! When I read that, I tried to see it the next day, without success. I'm bummed: the Great Comet of 2007, and I missed it.

Lee | January 27, 2007 06:18 AM

An update on Pluto ...


It looks like Pluto has a better chance of making a comeback as a planet than GWB has on gaining popularity.

Dan | January 27, 2007 08:31 AM

That's not Venus. That's a space station.

Chang, father of pangolins | January 27, 2007 08:45 AM

That's not a space station - it's a furrie orgy station!!!

Simon Haynes | January 27, 2007 08:54 AM

Comet McNaught pics? I took some from my driveway over the past couple of weeks. (I'm in Western Australia - clear skies, early summer, great view.) There are two shots on this page:


Steve Buchheit | January 27, 2007 11:43 AM

Never did get to see the comet. Too cloudy in NE Ohio coupled with mega overtime. Sigh.

CaseyL | January 27, 2007 02:10 PM

Pluto's making a comeback!

You can't keep a good planet down! Or out. Or whatever...

I don't go to scientific conferences, but I'm tempted by some of those mentioned in the article. Just to see the fur fly.

Lee | January 28, 2007 02:51 AM

Well, here is a possible anthem for those who miss Pluto.


Athena might even get a kick out of it as it also includes the lyrics.

Maya | January 28, 2007 07:07 PM

What a beautiful picture! And Veuns being there makes it extra cool, altough I didn't really register it until you pointed it out. :)

Randy | January 29, 2007 10:19 AM

Yep, my 3 & 6 year old kids both know that the first, brightest star they see in the evening is NOT a star, but actually the planet Venus.

My daughter keeps wanting to know when Mars is going to be close enough to see in the night sky....(without working too hard, that is. The other year when it was bright orange in the sky every night was cool).

George E. Martin | January 29, 2007 08:38 PM

Randy wrote:

My daughter keeps wanting to know when Mars is
going to be close enough to see in the night
sky....(without working too hard, that is. The
other year when it was bright orange in the skyevery night was cool).

She'll have a while to wait. Mars is currently
in the morning sky, rising a little before 5:30 AM
at my latitude, +34 N. Currently at +1.4 magnitue
it's a somewhat tough object for the naked eye
in the pre dawn sky.

Mars will be an easy Thanksgiving/Christmas object, reaching oposition on the 24th of Dec. It won't be as bright as the close summer opposition in 2003 which is likely what you are remembering. But at -1.6 magnitude, quite bright (Sirius -1.4). Note that the moon is almost full on the night of the 24th.

While it doesn't get the press that Mars does,
Jupiter is in oposition on the 5th of June. It will be at magnitude -2.6 and trivially easy; just
don't confuse Venus (-4.2) in the Western sky with Jupiter in the Southeastern sky during the early evening.


Clare | February 3, 2007 03:11 AM

You're upset about missing the comet? I'm in New Zealand, and I've up and down the South Island over the last three weeks, and I still haven't seen it! I've been trailing cloud behind me like veil. Sigh.

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