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Jupiter-Saturn Conjunction
December 2020

These images of Jupiter and Saturn were captured in December 2020, before, at, and after the "Great Conjunction" on December 21. All were taken with a Canon EOS RP mirrorless full-frame digital camera, but using a different lens and focal length for each. From the top, on December 12, a Tamron 150 to 600 mm telephoto zoom lens at 600 mm; middle, December 21 (the day of formal conjunction in geocentric right ascension), a Canon 400 mm telephoto lens; bottom, December 27, a 130 mm, f/7 apo refractor, 910 mm focal length. Each was cropped proportionately to the same equivalent focal length of 1,136 mm for direct comparison of the planetary separation, as noted below each image. They are single frame exposures on a fixed tripod, nominally at 5:35 pm EST on the indicated date. Brightness of these twilight images has been reduced somewhat to emphasize the positions of Jupiter and Saturn. The field of view is 1.8 wide x 1.2 high in each case.

 

December 12, 2018, 59 arc minutes separation, Jupiter at bottom right, Saturn at top left (Maple Shade, NJ).

 

December 21, 2020, formal conjunction, 6 arc minutes separation, Jupiter is below-left of Saturn (East Point, NJ).

 

December 27, 2020, 42 arc minutes separation, Jupiter at upper left, Saturn bottom right (Moorestown, NJ).

 

 

 

 

 

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Last Update: Thursday, January 07, 2021 at 01:19 PM Eastern Time