Home > Conjunction, Mars, Venus > 03/29/2013 – Ephemeris –

03/29/2013 – Ephemeris –

March 28, 2013

Ephemeris for Thursday, March 28th.  The sun will rise at 7:30.  It’ll be up for 12 hours and 34 minutes, setting at 8:05.   The moon, 1 day past full, will rise at 10:01 this evening.

Venus is passing superior conjunction with the sun today.  Superior means Venus is passing behind, thought not directly behind the Sun.  You can see it only in the images of the SOHO spacecraft.  On the Internet google soho nasa to find the site.   Our last inferior conjunction of Venus was the transit of Venus last June, when Venus crossed the face of the sun.  Mars is about to pass in conjunction with the sun.  All its conjunctions are superior.  For about a month, starting April 4th. the satellites and rovers cannot receive transmissions from the earth due to the sun’s radio noise, so they are put into a passive state.  The Deep Space Network on the earth can pick up their transmissions, though not well during this period due to its greater sensitivity.

Times are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan.  They may be different for your location.


SOHO LASCO C3 image of the sun

Annotated SOHO LASCO C3 image of the sun, behind the occulting disk with Venus and Mars. Image: ESA, NASA

  1. April 1, 2013 at 5:02 pm

    I took this picture of the Sun (http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=309614855834911&set=a.232694163526981.53094.232689873527410&type=1&theater) from Lima, Peru on march 28th 2013 at 18:35 local time. Is that black point above the sun is a planet?

    • April 2, 2013 at 3:14 pm


      I’ve inspected your photo and I have no idea what it is. However it is not a planet. Since it is seen against the bright sky next to the sun, it could be anywhere between our upper atmosphere and the CCD chip in your camera. If it were beyond the atmosphere it would be invisible. For instance, the new moon cannot be seen unless it passes directly between the sun and you, creating an eclipse of the sun.

      There are two planets near the line of sight with the sun: Mars and Venus. They are on the other side of the sun and thus fully illuminated by the sun. They cannot be seen from earth due to the bright daytime sky. Google NASA SOHO for links to the SOHO page and look at the LASCO C3 real time images for these planets from a million miles sunward of the earth.

      Wishing you clear skies.


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