Science

Just Binoculars Needed to See Jupiter's Largest Moons

Just Binoculars Needed to See Jupiter's Largest Moons”

"The solar system's largest planet is a brilliant jewel to the naked eye, but looks fantastic through binoculars or a small telescope, which will allow you to spot the four largest moons", the US space agency posted on its website.

Jupiter will be at its "biggest and brightest" this June, offering a fantastic chance to see the largest planet in the solar system.

Why does Jupiter look so big this month?

The fifth planet from the Sun will be at its most visible on June 10 when it reaches opposition - a yearly event in which Jupiter, Earth and the Sun form a straight line, with Earth in the middle.

"The solar system's largest planet is a brilliant jewel to the naked eye". This means Jupiter is fairly close to Earth and you can spot it lurking in the sky all night long. The planet and even its moons will be visible without a telescope, and Jupiter will be close to Earth than at any other time for the rest of the year.

From June 14 to 19, amateur astronomers can see a "beautiful lineup" of the moon, Jupiter and Saturn, which will change each night as the moon orbits Earth. It will be the brightest visible object in the sky aside from the moon. At this point, the two planets will be separated by a mere 398 million miles. If you have a pair of binoculars, look up at Jupiter and you'll be able to get a glimpse of the famous banded clouds surrounding the planet. It's helpful if you're in an area with low light pollution.

As a backup, and an even more detailed view, NASA's Juno spacecraft satellite is now orbiting Jupiter, and has captured some spectacular footage, which you can check out below.



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