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Jupiter plus two asteroids in one shot


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Having followed both Ceres and Vesta for the past couple of months with binoculars, last night was my first chance to take a snap of them with the Canon. This is a very dated version of the digital SLR camera, it has to be said. The 300D is one of the earliest digital SLRs that came on the market several years ago. Despite the atrocious light pollution, the two asteroids just made it through in the 8-second frame:

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Thanks for your kind words, folks.

What an occasion that the two brightest members of the asteroid main belt are presented as foreground objects in front of Jupiter - in the same constellation, at the same time.. A high-speed voyage to Jup (had we set ourselves on such a course now) will have had us pass by both on our way there! :smiley:

The two will stay on view right through into spring. On the night of 7th March, Ceres will pass less than half a degree south of El Nath (Beta Tauri)... so that should be quite a photo opportunity.

Here’s an even bigger heads up: on the night of the 13th July 2014, we shall see a once in a lifetime conjunction between the two brightest asteroids in the sky. At around midnight on this date, Ceres and Vesta will pass within... wait for it... just a few arc minutes of one another in Virgo!!

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