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Jupiter will make its closest approach to earth in 59 years on Monday

"Jupiter’s opposition occurs every 13 months, making the planet appear larger and brighter than any other time of the year. But that’s not all. Jupiter will also make its closest approach to Earth since 1963 – almost six decades ago!," NASA's blog said.

September 24, 2022 / 10:44 PM IST
This photo of Jupiter, taken from the Hubble Space Telescope on June 27, 2019, features the Great Red Spot, a storm the size of Earth that has been raging for hundreds of years. Credits: NASA, ESA, A. Simon (Goddard Space Flight Center), and M.H. Wong (University of California, Berkeley) (Image: https://blogs.nasa.gov)

This photo of Jupiter, taken from the Hubble Space Telescope on June 27, 2019, features the Great Red Spot, a storm the size of Earth that has been raging for hundreds of years. Credits: NASA, ESA, A. Simon (Goddard Space Flight Center), and M.H. Wong (University of California, Berkeley) (Image: https://blogs.nasa.gov)


Astronomers will have a clear glimpse of Jupiter on Monday night (September 26), weather permitting. The largest planet in the solar system will pass exceptionally near to the Earth, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), said.

According to NASA, this is the first time Jupiter will be this close to Earth in 59 years.

"Jupiter’s opposition occurs every 13 months, making the planet appear larger and brighter than any other time of the year. But that’s not all. Jupiter will also make its closest approach to Earth since 1963 – almost six decades ago!," NASA's blog said.

The blog further mentioned that this is happening because, "Earth and Jupiter do not orbit the Sun in perfect circles – meaning the planets will pass each other at different distances throughout the year".

Jupiter will be 367 million miles away from Earth when it makes its closest approach, about the same distance it was in 1963.

“With good binoculars, the banding (at least the central band) and three or four of the Galilean satellites (moons) should be visible,” said Adam Kobelski, a research astrophysicist at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama.

To see Jupiter's Great Red Spot and bands in greater detail, Kobelski advises using a larger telescope. A 4-inch or larger telescope and some filters in the green to blue spectrum might improve the visibility of these features.

Kobelski claims that the best viewing spot will be at a high elevation in a dry, in dark area.
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first published: Sep 24, 2022 10:44 pm