greatest elongation

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The occasion when either Mercury or Venus reaches its greatest angular separation from the Sun. Greatest elongation east occurs in the evening sky, and greatest elongation west in the morning sky. The greatest elongation of Mercury ranges from about 18° to 28°, depending on whether it lies near perihelion or aphelion, and for Venus from 45° to 47°.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics.

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