Venus and Jupiter visible in night sky

The image shows the sky view towards the West at around 11pm on June 20,  2015. (Submitted Picture).
The image shows the sky view towards the West at around 11pm on June 20, 2015. (Submitted Picture).

The next two weeks will provide an interesting opportunity to see Venus and Jupiter as they move towards one another in the evening twilight, according to the Armagh Observatory.

Venus, the brightest planet, has been a spectacular object in the evening sky after sunset for most of this year, and in February passed very close to both Mars and Uranus.

The planet has now been joined in the west by the largest planet in the solar system - Jupiter, which now lies to the left of Venus at about the same altitude as its much brighter neighbour.

According to Armagh Observatory, the two planets are easily visible in the west as they sink towards the horizon in the evening twilight. As viewed from the Earth, both planets appear to be moving towards one another at a rate of about half a degree a day. They will meet at the end of the month at a closest approach distance of less than half a degree, that is, less than the angular diameter of the Moon.

The average frequency of such close approaches of Venus and Jupiter is about once every several years, the last one occurring on August 18, 2014