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Jupiter at solar conjunction

Dominic Ford, Editor
From the Outer Planets feed

Objects: Jupiter
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The sky at

Jupiter will pass very close to the Sun in the sky as its orbit carries it around the far side of the solar system from the Earth.

At closest approach, Jupiter will appear at a separation of only 0°28' from the Sun, making it totally unobservable for several weeks while it is lost in the Sun's glare.

At around the same time, Jupiter will also be at its most distant from the Earth – receding to a distance of 6.30 AU – since the two planets will lie on opposite sides of the solar system.

If Jupiter could be observed at this time, it would appear at its smallest and faintest on account of its large distance. It would measure 30.6 arcsec in diameter.

Over following weeks and months, Jupiter will re-emerge to the west of the Sun, gradually becoming visible for ever-longer periods in the pre-dawn sky. After around six months, it will reach opposition, when it will be visible for virtually the whole night. A chart of the path of Jupiter across the sky in 2026 can be found here, and a chart of its rising and setting times here.

The position of Jupiter at the moment it passes solar conjunction will be:

Object Right Ascension Declination Constellation Angular Size
Jupiter 08h34m10s +19°13' Cancer 30.6"
Sun 08h33m +18°45' Cancer 31'30"

The coordinates above are given in J2000.0.

The sky on 29 July 2026
Sunrise
05:42
Sunset
20:48
Twilight ends
23:10
Twilight begins
03:20

15-day old moon
Waxing Gibbous

99%

15 days old

Planets
Rise Culm. Set
Mercury 04:20 11:55 19:31
Venus 09:50 16:09 22:28
Moon 21:11 01:05 05:23
Mars 02:06 10:02 17:58
Jupiter 05:41 13:15 20:48
Saturn 23:16 05:38 11:56
All times shown in PDT.

Warning

Never attempt to point a pair of binoculars or a telescope at an object close to the Sun. Doing so may result in immediate and permanent blindness.

Source

The circumstances of this event were computed using the DE405 planetary ephemeris published by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL).

This event was automatically generated by searching the ephemeris for planetary alignments which are of interest to amateur astronomers, and the text above was generated based on an estimate of your location.

Related news

29 Jul 2026  –  Jupiter at solar conjunction
10 Feb 2027  –  Jupiter at opposition
31 Aug 2027  –  Jupiter at solar conjunction
12 Mar 2028  –  Jupiter at opposition

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PDT

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