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Astrophotos from Around the World of the Venus-Pleiades Conjunction

Venus at The Seven Sisters, M45 Pleiades on 04-04-2012. Credit and copyright John Chumack.

The past several evenings, Venus has been snuggling up to one of the most famous star clusters, the Pleiades. Universe Today readers have taken some beautiful images of that event, and they have generously shared them with us. Above is John Chumack’s stunning view from Ohio in the US; see below for more images from around the world!

The Pleiades, also known at the Seven Sisters, is a beautiful bright blue open star cluster 440 light years from Earth. Only once every eight years does this conjunction take place.


Venus within the Pleiades on April 4, 2012, as seen from New Jersey in the US. Credit and copyright John Anton.

John Anton took this pretty image from New Jersey in the US. “It was a beautiful sight,” he said.

Astronomers say that the relative tightness of the cluster indicates this is a young group of stars, and the member stars were formed about 100 million years ago and will probably travel together through space as a bound cluster for another 250 million years before the gravity of the Milky Way breaks up the cluster into individual field stars.

Venus and the Pleiades from San Diego, USA. Credit: Paul Miller

Venus and the Pleiades from the UK. Credit: Dave Liddicott.

“An old SLR 70-210mm zoom lens on my DMC-G10. 5 second exposure, 1600 ISO. Tree illuminated partly by a neighbours light and partly by the built in flash on the camera,” says Dave Liddicott.

The view of Venus and the Pleiades from Norway. Credit: Sirrka Stephens

Sirrka Stephens from Norway took her image using a Panasonic Lumix DMC-F62, Leica 35mm, 30 sec., f/2.8, ISO 80, rotated to the left.

The Venus-Pleiades conjunction from Lebanon.Credit: Space Weed

Space Weed” from Beirut, Lebanon took this image on April 3, 2012. “2 second exposure, ISO 1600, f 5.9, Stack of 40 images and 18 dark frames, Level correction in Photoshop,” Space Weed reports.

Venus shines brilliantly as it passies by the Pleiades star cluster on April 2, 2012. Credit: Tavi Greiner.

Tavi Greiner on the east coast of the US took this lovely image on April 2, 2012.

Venus and the Pleiades on April 3, 2012. Credit: Austin Russie

Another beautiful view from Austin Russie. “A luminous Venus passes directly between Earth and an elusive cluster of stars known as the Pleiades,” he says.

A double exposure, showing how Venus shifted in two hours' time. Credit: L. Laveder - TWAN

Laurent Laveder from France sent in this unusual image showing the shifting of Venus in the Pleiades in two hours’ time.

Image of the conjunction between Venus and M45 Pleiades in the middle of the trees, taken in Fonte-de-Telha, a small pine forest in Portugal. Credit: Miguel Claro

The final image is by Miguel Claro from Portugal, who can be seen enjoying the stars with binoculars “in a peaceful moment,” he said.

There are more images on UT’s Flick page, so check them out!

Want to get your astrophoto featured on Universe Today? Join our Flickr group, post in our Forum or send us your images by email (this means you’re giving us permission to post them). Please explain what’s in the picture, when you took it, the equipment you used, etc.

Editor’s note: Apologies for the irregular formatting of this article — we’re working to fix it!

About 

Nancy Atkinson is Universe Today's Senior Editor. She also works with Astronomy Cast, and is a NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Jacob Marchio April 5, 2012, 6:49 PM

    Great pictures. It was cloudy, so I didn’t get to see the event :(. it must have been spectacular to see

  • vagueofgodalming April 5, 2012, 11:05 PM

    That one by Sirrka Stephens is from the Northern hemisphere (and Sirrka doesn’t claim it’s from Australia, as far as I can see).

    • NancyAtkinson April 6, 2012, 1:57 AM

      You’re right — she lives in Norway. Corrected.

  • Rick Stankiewicz April 8, 2012, 3:33 AM

    John Chumack’s image is the best I have seen to date, from anywhere or from anyone, hands down!

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