Look at Jupiter with binoculars tonight


Jupiter will appear larger and brighter than usual on Monday night, as it approaches its closest point to Earth since 1963.

Jupiter – a huge gas giant with a milky orange color – is the largest planet in our solar system. Color ribbons on the planet swirling gases Momentum in mega storm systems. Some of these systems, like Jupiter’s Great Red Spot, last for centuries.

The planet’s remarkable features will be very relaxed tonight thanks to the way it orbits the sun. Both the orbits of Earth and Jupiter are slightly elliptical, which means that the distance between the planets varies. And the orbits of the two planets are quite different – a year on Jupiter, or the time it takes to make one trip around the sun, takes 12 years on Earth.

At its greatest distance, Jupiter is about 600 million miles from Earth. But tonight, you will be only 367 million miles away from us. Jupiter is on the opposite side of Earth like the sun tonight, a position called opposition, which makes the gas giant appear larger and brighter than usual.

Jupiter and its four moons in Galilee.

Jupiter and the Galilean moons (top to bottom): Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto.
picture: NASA / Newsmakers (Getty Images)

According to Adam Kobelsky, an astrophysicist at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, the planet’s bands and many of its Galilean moons would be visible with good binoculars. “One of the primary needs is going to be the stable installation of whatever system you’re using,” said Kobelsky at NASA. Release.

A 4-inch or larger telescope will be able to pick out specific features on the planet’s face, such as the Great Red Spot. If you don’t have a decent telescope or binoculars, Jupiter will still be visible to the naked eye, but you won’t be able to see any details of the planet.

However, its brightness will be more noticeable than usual thanks to its proximity. No matter how you choose to observe Jupiter, clear weather conditions, high altitudes, and dark skies will help. Although its closest approach will be tonight, Jupiter and its moons will be more visible over the next few nights, according to NASA Edition.

And if you want to see Jupiter in super color, you can refer to some Recent images by the Web . Space Telescope Which captured the planet’s aurora borealis in infrared.

Jupiter’s moons are also set to get more attention. NASA agency Europa clipper The mission – set to launch no later than October 2024 – will give us our best look yet at Jupiter’s frozen moon Europa. Scientists believe that a vast salty ocean lies under the icy crust of Europe. Clipper will map the lunar surface and use ice-penetrating radar to peer into the mysterious underworld.

There are exciting missions on the horizon for Jupiter and its moons, but for the next few nights, we’ll appreciate these celestial bodies from here on Earth.

More: Scientists look at nine hurricanes hovering at Jupiter’s north pole

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