The instant of conjunction does not necessarily correspond to the moment of least angular separation between the two bodies (compare appulse
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Mars and Spica are 14[degrees] apart on American evening of June 1st, 5 1/2[degrees] on July 1st, and 1.3[degrees] on July 13th, their own date of least angular separation (appulse
He then described the current visibility of the planets, noting an unusually close appulse
of Saturn and Venus visible before sunrise on November 26 & 27 with Mercury also not far distant.
. Set your calendar to remind you to look at Uranus on the evenings of September 21st through 23rd.
I was aware that there was to be an appulse
for these two objects and that they were of almost identical magnitude, but recent weather had been so poor as to make the observation unlikely of success.
Interestingly, their appulse
(actual closest approach on the sky) occurs 6 days later, but even then their separation is more than 4[degrees].
(closest encounter) comes on August 20th, when Mercury passes 1[degrees] below Venus, as shown in the "film strip" at right.
(least separation) of the two is only 4.3' at 23:36 UT; again observers in central Asia get a good view.
I am indebted to BAA member Mark Gingrich who alerted me to an unusual 'appulse
' of Uranus and the star 44 Piscium.