1. Hi guys, has anyone got a link to a web site that shows/predicts the best times for planet closeness. I know mars was at its closest a good few years back, just wondered when its at its best again. Same with the others

2.

3. http://www.fourmilab.ch/cgi-bin/uncgi/Solar

I thought I gave you this one some time ago where you can adjust the date and see where they will be, just look at the where they are now, and knowing the rotation time add it and bingo, remember the earth moves as well (but only in the company of a good woman...).

If not have a look in the Bible or Qur'an it's bound to be in them somewhere... :wink:

I did calculate Mars will be next here around Christmas, - set Dec 27th 2007 in there, set for inner planets, images scale it 700 and bingo

4. thats the one. Thanks.

i finally got to see saturn a couple of weeks ago. very impressive in the flesh. Pretty sure i could see two moons also. spend a couple of hours out there and got to test the new barlow on it

5. I just updated the values in my previous post, looks like Midnight on the few days either side of Christmas 20-27 peak night of 22-23rd I use a scale size of 700 for the inner planets, Saturn yes lovely! it's not 'round' like everything else [if you know what I mean] what ange are the rings at the moment? edge on = 0 degs full view = 90degs - your guess?

6. Originally Posted by Megabrain
I just updated the values in my previous post, looks like Midnight on the few days either side of Christmas 20-27 peak night of 22-23rd I use a scale size of 700 for the inner planets, Saturn yes lovely! it's not 'round' like everything else [if you know what I mean] what ange are the rings at the moment? edge on = 0 degs full view = 90degs - your guess?

when we saw it it was about 45degrees(or less) tilted down towards us(and then the whole thing tilted at about 45degrees with two dots, one either side at same angle). i couldn't make out the gaps in the rings but that was probably more to do with scope than angle it was at

definite jaw dropping moment :-D

7. I see it will be 'closest' and highest in the sky around Valentines Day, the higher it is the less atmospheric abberation I'll take a look then I guess you saw it either after 1AM high or late evening Lower in the East.

8. Originally Posted by Megabrain
I see it will be 'closest' and highest in the sky around Valentines Day, the higher it is the less atmospheric abberation I'll take a look then I guess you saw it either after 1AM high or late evening Lower in the East.

yeah we had to wait until it was about 1am to 2am so it could pass over into our back garden. so about that kinda time and bloody freezing :-D

9. How nice to talk about science for a change in a science forum... :wink:

10. Originally Posted by Megabrain
How nice to talk about science for a change in a science forum... :wink:
yeah. its been a good month for astronomy too. weve(me and the wife) has started to pick out more and more constalations as the month goes on.

11. I was just looking at the orbits of pluto and neptune. is it possible that at sometime in the future pluto could hit neptune, due to their overlapping orbits ?

12. Originally Posted by leohopkins
I was just looking at the orbits of pluto and neptune. is it possible that at sometime in the future pluto could hit neptune, due to their overlapping orbits ?
http://www.livescience.com/mysteries...uto_orbit.html

The answer I found indicates "no"

13. They orbit in a 3d rather than 2d plane, mathematically, given enough time they could, but if you look at it on a real scale I hear it's like two people each shooting a grain of sand at the other every several thousand years from each end of a football field.... what are the odds of them colliding? virtually but not certainly nil. Indeed I hazard a guess the solar system will be long dead before that can happen.

Here's a link where can move things for yourself and see..
http://www.fourmilab.ch/cgi-bin/Solar

EDIT:
Pluto has crossed now back outside the orbit of neptune, but is still above neptune in the z-axis, I think it will cross the xy axis in another 20 years or so and therefore be outside the orbit of neptune - it needs to be in XY& z at the same time - this never happens, so now I have 'modelled it' I can see it will never collide unless some other event occurs such as a collision with another body to alter it's orbit.

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