As the year progresses Venus draws in towards the Sun as it approaches inferior conjunction
in 2014 January.
Before the transit: Venus close to inferior conjunction
7) Before inferior conjunction
in 1958 there was a fortnight (1957 Dec 29-1958 Jan 13) during which ten BAA observers including Firsoff saw the Light prominently and often without doubt.
Since inferior conjunction
a few observations have come to hand.
For a transit to occur, Venus must reach inferior conjunction
within a day of passing through one of its nodes.
A note published in the 2009 October Journal (119(5), 240 (2009)) discussed Venus observations made around inferior conjunction
in 2009, focusing upon infrared thermal emission studies and an especially bright spot imaged in ultraviolet light on 2009 Jul 19 by Frank Mellilo (USA).
Mercury will not be available for observation these months, and Venus will be at inferior conjunction
on Oct 29, but in November Venus will again become the 'morning star', prominent in the pre-dawn sky.
Venus was also close to the Sun at present, and would reach inferior conjunction
on March 28; it would re-emerge in the morning sky over the next few weeks, reaching maximum western elongation on June 5.
An inferior conjunction
is when the two planets line up towards the Sun on the same side.
On either side of inferior conjunction
a number of contributors (see the Report of the Council in the current Journal) secured infrared images showing the glowing nightside of the planet.
Venus was at superior conjunction in 2008 June, at greatest eastern elongation in 2009 mid-January, and inferior conjunction
was reached in late March, after which the ongoing morning elongation commenced.
Fast-moving Mercury rapidly drops from view in early May, reaching inferior conjunction
between Earth and Sun on the 18th.