Venus to give stargazers in Japan another treat next week
Venus will pass behind the moon--a phenomenon called an occultation--next Tuesday, an event that will be visible across most of the nation and round off a bumper year for celestial shows involving the planet.
According to the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, the occultation can be observed (weather permitting) in areas except for parts of Okinawa Prefecture. This is the first time since 1989 that the event can be seen over such a broad swath of Japan.
In Tokyo, Venus will become obscured in the east-northeast sky by the crescent moon at 2:44 a.m. and reappear at 3:29 a.m.
The next Venus occultation by the moon that can be observed in Japan will be in May 2063.
Stargazers in Japan have had a year to remember in 2012, with an annular solar eclipse in May and the transit of Venus across the sun in June being the highlights.