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Venus at Peak of Brightness

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 8 years ago | from the me-and-my-shadow dept.

Space 25

Jotii writes "The planet Venus is right now at its peak of brightness. Until the third of December, you will actually be able to see shadows cast by Venus. From the article: "Venus is reaching its peak brightness for 2005 and casting its very best shadows right now." More from the article: 'Difficult, yes, but worth the effort, he says. After all, how many people have seen themselves silhouetted by the light of another planet? If you'd like to try, this is the week. Your attempt must come before Dec. 3rd. After that, the crescent moon will join Venus in the evening sky, and any shadows you see then will be moon shadows.'"

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25 comments

Grr... (3, Funny)

BrainInAJar (584756) | more than 8 years ago | (#14133844)

Too bad I live in the north west... I never get to see anything in the sky that isn't water.

Re:Grr... (1)

Leroy_Brown242 (683141) | more than 8 years ago | (#14134442)

Yes, but the grass is always green! :)

Come on, look on the bright side!

Don't you think women in rain coats are sexy?!

Re:Grr... (1)

PakProtector (115173) | more than 8 years ago | (#14135591)

Yes, but the grass is always green! :)

Come on, look on the bright side!

Don't you think women in rain coats are sexy?!

On a related tangental note, perhaps you could tell me something.

Where is Carmen Sandiego?
Carmen Sandiego.
Where on Earth can she be?

Re:Grr... (1)

Leroy_Brown242 (683141) | more than 8 years ago | (#14135627)

San Diego is where I'd start looking.

I hear she used to be a Red Hat user, but switched to Fedora. . . .



Yes, I know nobody is going to get the joke. :)

Re:Grr... (1)

PakProtector (115173) | more than 8 years ago | (#14135658)

Personally, I'm hoping for all the disgruntled detectives to come out of the woodwork.

Re:Grr... (1)

mink (266117) | more than 8 years ago | (#14161004)

I suggest you watch Forte Inc. closely. The splash screen graphics for Agent and Free Agent suggest she is up to no good.

Pesky light pollution (2, Insightful)

ArwynH (883499) | more than 8 years ago | (#14133889)

FTA mentions it briefly, but due to light pollution most of us won't be able to do this easily. If you live anywhere near a big city chances are the brightest thing in the sky will be Plasma screen adverts bouncing off it.

Pity really, it would be a pointless thing to do, but at least you could boast about it in your old age...

Re:Pesky light pollution (1)

Otter (3800) | more than 8 years ago | (#14133929)

Yeah, last night I noticed that Venus was unusually bright but it wasn't that bright! Maybe in a wilderness area you might be able to get a shadow, but certainly not anyplace urban.

Re:Pesky light pollution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14134071)

Grandad, tell us about when the sky was so poorly illuminated you could only read your analog watch on cloudy nights!

Whoa (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14134125)

silhouetted by the light of another planet?

Venus generates its own light?

Re:Whoa (1)

Macphisto (62181) | more than 8 years ago | (#14134151)

Where in that statement do you see anything about "another planet" generating this light? It's simply "the light of another planet", generated by the planet or otherwise.

Re:Whoa (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14138874)

You are aware that the "light of venus" is just SUN light reflected off the planet, right? There's nothing magical about it at all.

Bright enough to see in the day also (4, Informative)

Colonel Blimp (642760) | more than 8 years ago | (#14134341)

If you know where to look and you have a clear sky, you can see Venus in the day time. Best time to look is after noon, 3-4 hours before sunset. Its pretty odd to see something like that in the clear blue sky.

Re:Bright enough to see in the day also (1)

Fess_Longhair (695896) | more than 8 years ago | (#14135172)

I really enjoy daylight unaided sightings of venus; it just feels amazing to me to see a planet in broad daylight. The funny thing is that after you find it, if you look away, and then look back, you can't miss it! A good empheris is helpful to narrow the search to a small part of the sky. This one at JPL [nasa.gov] is my favorite.

Re:Bright enough to see in the day also (2, Interesting)

Kelson (129150) | more than 8 years ago | (#14135602)

I am so going to have to try this tomorrow.

Way back in high school, I used to have a "zero period" class that started at 7:00am. I'd start walking to school early enough that Venus was still quite visible, and I'd try to keep it in view as long as possible as the sky lightened.

Re:Bright enough to see in the day also (1)

Kelson (129150) | more than 8 years ago | (#14197509)

Hey, thanks for giving me the idea. I tried it on my walk to and from lunch today, and succeeded in spotting Venus four times over a 45-minute period!

Now that would make a cool photo... (2, Funny)

El Micko (118401) | more than 8 years ago | (#14134375)

Would I need to use my flash to get a picture of the shadow? ;-)

Re:Now that would make a cool photo... (2, Interesting)

Kelson (129150) | more than 8 years ago | (#14135619)

Heh. I know this is a joke, but a few years ago I watched a lunar eclipse from my balcony. At one point one of my neighbors came out and started taking pictures of the moon -- with the flash. One can just mean you forgot to turn it off, but two or more?

It reminded me of the people you occasionally see at Disneyland taking flash photos in Star Tours, not realizing they're likely to get a washed-out white screen instead of a picture of the Death Star.

From where? (1)

Leroy_Brown242 (683141) | more than 8 years ago | (#14134464)

I wonder what parts of the world can see venus right now. I'm near the equator in Thailand, and have not noticed anything extra bright in the sky.

Now that I know it's supposed to be near the moon, at least I'll have some place to look specificly.

Re:From where? (3, Informative)

Colonel Blimp (642760) | more than 8 years ago | (#14135058)

it can be seen anywhere.

In Thailand, look just after sunset in the west sky, its the very bright star, you can't miss it. It sets about 90 minutes after sunset.

Even the smog of Bangkok can't cloak it!

Re:From where? (1)

Leroy_Brown242 (683141) | more than 8 years ago | (#14135102)

eewww, Bangkok.

You couldn't pay me enough to live there.

Thanks for the info though. I'll be sure to look at the sky next time we have clear skies!

Re:From where? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14135775)

Next time you have clear skies? eewww, the South!

You couldn't pay me enough to live there, or Bangkok :P

Re:From where? (1)

glaswegian (803339) | more than 8 years ago | (#14141360)

You will have more luck if you look towards the Sun. Venus is closer to the Sun than the Earth which means when we see it, it will never be far from the Sun.

You may have heard Venus called the morning or evening star as it is very bright and will be the first star seen at night and the last one to be seen in the morning.

This is all assuming that Venus is not wandering on the other side of the Sun, in which case you will see sweet fa.

when mars aligns (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14135343)

can I finally ask a girl out?

A Moon Shadow (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14144174)

Your attempt must come before Dec. 3rd. After that, the crescent moon will join Venus in the evening sky, and any shadows you see then will be moon shadows.
Yes, I'm being followed by a moon shadow, moon shadow, moon shadow.
A leapin' and hoppin' on a moon shadow, moon shadow, moon shadow.
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