Jupiter will be 96 crore kilometres away from us at its farthest point.
The solar system’s largest planet will be closest to Earth in nearly 70 years.
Opposition occurs when an astronomical object rises in the east as the Sun sets in the west, putting them on opposite sides of Earth as seen from Earth.
Jupiter is heading towards Earth again, over two years after rare planetary conjunction. This month, the solar system’s largest planet will be closest to Earth in nearly 70 years.
When Jupiter approaches opposition on September 26, it will be visible all night. Opposition occurs when an astronomical object rises in the east as the Sun sets in the west, putting them on opposite sides of Earth as seen from Earth.
Jupiter’s closest approach to Earth in 70 years. The difference in orbits around the Sun causes this. Jupiter and Earth don’t orbit the Sun perfectly. Throughout the year, the planets will pass at varying distances.
Jupiter will be 96 crore kilometres away from us at its farthest point on Monday. “Jupiter’s closest approach to Earth rarely coincides with opposition, which means this year’s views will be extraordinary,” Nasa added.
How to see Jupiter at night
Even at its closest, the planet will be too far away to see with the naked eye. A telescope can magnify and focus the planet’s image. Find higher, clearer land for better viewing.
With decent binoculars, the bands and three or four Galilean satellites (moons) should be visible. Galileo used 17th-century optics to observe these moons. Adam Kobelski, a Nasa astrophysicist, said a stable mount is a must.
Astrophysicists recommend a four-inch or larger telescope and green to blue filters to see Jupiter’s Great Red Spot and bands in detail.
“The views should be great for a few days before and after September 26. So, take advantage of good weather on either side of this date to take in the sight. Outside of the Moon, it should be one of the (if not the) brightest objects in the night sky,” he added.
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