Winter Solstice and the 'Great Conjunction' of Jupiter and Saturn: Know all about it
December 2020 is a month loaded with celestial spectacles. In the last few weeks, we have witnessed the Geminids meteor shower and a total Solar Eclipse. Now get ready for the 'Great Conjunction' tomorrow, when the two giants of our Solar System - Jupiter and the Saturn - come very close to each other. As we get well into the Christmas season, there is tremendous excitement on this year's 'Christmas Star' and that is because of the 'Great Conjunction' of Jupiter and Saturn. It is being referred to as the 'Christmas Star of 2020. According to NASA, "the two planets will appear just a tenth of a degree apart" and such an event will not happen again in the next 60 years, that is, until 2080. Such a showstopping celestial show is set to take place after nearly 400 years "since the planets passed this close to each other in the sky, and nearly 800 years since the alignment of Saturn and Jupiter occurred at night," says the NASA. Not only that, the world will witness the 'Great Conjunction' of Jupiter and Saturn on Winter Solstice. This year the Winter Solstice is on December 21.
The 'Great Conjunction' of Jupiter and Saturn will be the closest since 1623, which is 13 years after Galileo built his first telescope and discovered four new 'stars' orbiting the Jupiter. The father of modern science observed and described the moons of Jupiter, the rings of Saturn and Sun spots among other discoveries.
The Winter Solstice that marks the shortest day of the year for us in the Northern Hemisphere and longest day in the Southern Hemisphere is indeed very special this year. Here is the date and time of the December Solstice.
Northern Hemisphere Winter Solstice Time and Date in India
(North America, Central America, Europe, Asia, northern Africa)
December Solstice in New Delhi, India is on Monday, 21 December 2020, 15:32 IST
Here's wishing everyone a warm Winter Solstice. May the light of the Sun bring cheer in our lives!