KU ISST observes great conjunction


The Institute of Space Science and Technology University of Karachi observed the rare phenomenon of Jupiter and Saturn, the two planets of the solar system, which appeared closest in the sky, the Director ISST Professor Dr Jawed Iqbal said on Tuesday. He mentioned that this is called the great conjunction. He added that earlier, the two planets passed very close to each other in 1623, but the view was extremely difficult due to their proximity to the Sun, and this conjunction would be repeated on March 15, 2080. According to Dr Jawed Iqbal, Jupiter and Saturn are the two largest planets in our solar system. Jupiter is about 11 times the size of Earth, is the largest planet in our solar system, while Saturn is about 9.4 times the size of Earth. He said that Jupiter’s distance from the Sun is 778 kilometers while Saturn’s distance from the Sun is about 1427 million kilometers. He further said that Jupiter completes one cycle in about 11.8 years, while Saturn completes one cycle in 29.5 years. The distance between them is more or less the same when the two planets are closest to each other at the same time. “When these both planets came closest in the sky and observed in the same direction during the same time then we call it conjunction.” Dr Jawed Iqbal shared that the planets Jupiter and Saturn usually pass close to each other every twenty years, but the junction that occurred on Monday, December 21, 2020, is called the Great Connection because the distance between the two planets was very short. It was 733 million kilometers and observed at a distance of 0.1 degrees from the Earth.

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