Planetary conjunction of Mars, Venus

Source: The Hindu 

What is the News? 

Earth’s two immediate neighbors Mars and Venus will come closest to each other. This event is called planetary conjunction.  

What is Conjunction? 
  • The conjunction is the name given to any event where planets or asteroids appear to be very close together in the sky when viewed from the Earth.  
What is Planetary Conjunction? 
  • Planetary conjunction takes place when two planets appear to have come closer, while in reality, they remain far away. 
What is Great Conjunction? 
  • Astronomers use the term great conjunction to describe meetings of the two biggest planets in the solar system, Jupiter and Saturn.  
  • The Great Conjunction happens once in about 20 years, because of the time each of the planets takes to orbit around the Sun. 

About Mars: 

  • Mars is the fourth planet from the Sun and the second-smallest planet in the Solar System. It is larger than only Mercury.  
  • In English, Mars carries the name of the Roman god of war and is often referred to as the “Red Planet”. 
  • It is also called the Red Planet because of the effect of the iron oxide prevalent on Mars’s surface which gives it a reddish appearance distinctive among the astronomical bodies visible to the naked eye. 

About Venus: 

  • Venus is the second planet from the sun. It is similar in structure but slightly smaller than Earth (Earth’s Twin). 
  • Venus has a thick and toxic atmosphere that consists primarily of carbon dioxide with clouds of sulfuric acid droplets. 
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