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Jupiter Will Be So Close To Earth This Month, Its Moons Can Be Seen With Binoculars

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This month would be a good time to spend some time looking at the night sky, with unique views ready to be unveiled. The most interesting, perhaps, is planet Jupiter coming so close to Earth that one can easily see its moons even just with the use of binoculars.

Jupiter Opposition

On June 10, Jupiter will reach opposition, meaning it will be in a straight line with Earth and the sun, with the Earth in the middle of the two giants. It is a yearly occurrence that is the best time to see Jupiter because the planet will rise at dusk and will remain visible in the sky all night. Although this occurs at a specific date, the entire month around it is actually the best time to have a look at Jupiter and its four largest moons.

It is also around the time when Jupiter is closest to the Earth, so it will be at its biggest and brightest this month. Although the solar system’s largest planet can be seen with the naked eye, using binoculars, one can also have a look at its four largest moons or perhaps even the clouds around the planet.

Jupiter

Jupiter is the fifth planet in line from the sun, and is the largest planet in the solar system. In fact, it is over twice the size of all the other planets combined. One of Jupiter’s first surprises to the world of science was in 1610, when Galileo Galilei discovered its moons, the first ones to be discovered beyond the Earth.

The stripes and swirls on the planet are actually clouds of ammonia and water floating in Jupiter’s atmosphere of hydrogen and helium. Its iconic Great Red Spot is a massive storm that has been going on for hundreds of years, and is even bigger than the Earth.

Other Sky Events In June

If seeing Jupiter gets one excited about sky watching, there are also other events that people can get excited for this month. On June 17 and 18, Mars and Mercury will appear very close together in the sky immediately after sunset.

Also, from June 14 to 19, the moon will line up with Jupiter and Saturn in the sky.

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