LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — As a historically difficult and disastrous 2020 comes to an end, skywatchers urged people to look up Monday night for a ray of hope – or rather, a star of hope.
Saturn and Jupiter were so close to each other Monday night, astronomers and skywatchers say they shined like a double planet. The heavenly sight, referred to by some as a “Christmas star,” is an extremely rare phenomenon that last happened in the Middle Ages.
According to the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the great conjunction won’t happen again until 2080.
The Griffith Observatory remains closed due to the pandemic, but All Space Considered at Griffith Observatory tweeted frequently about the coming convergence.
The Ventura County Astronomical Society has also been keeping tabs on the two planets, and featuring images taken by amateur night sky photographers from various locations throughout the county.
NASA said the two planets will be visible in the southwest for those in the northern hemisphere, and staying up late or special equipment was not necessary to see this rare phenomenon – astronomers said the two planets were visible to the naked eye about 45 minutes after sunset.