UNITED STATES: If you are a sky gazer and love to watch the night sky then you will not want to miss this rare celestial event.
On Monday, Sept. 26, as Jupiter approaches, it will be closest to Earth for the first time in almost 60 years, providing astronomers with a breathtaking glimpse of the largest planet in our solar system.
NASA estimates that the distance between Earth and Jupiter at their farthest point is around 600 million miles. Due to the imperfect symmetry of both planets’ orbits around the Sun, they pass each other at varying distances throughout the year.
The closest potential distance between Jupiter and Earth on Monday will be 367 million miles. According to NASA, the two planets haven’t been this year since 1963.
However, this close flyby is particularly noteworthy because Jupiter will be reaching opposition at the same time.
According to NASA, opposition happens when a space object, such as the enormous planet Jupiter, appears on one side of Earth while the Sun appears on the other.
Every 13 months, Jupiter is in opposition to the sun. The planet seems larger and brighter at this time of year than at other times. Its opposition along with its closest approach to Earth makes for a magnificent nighttime sky display.
Adam Kobelski, a research astrophysicist at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, claims that some features and the moons of Jupiter can be seen even with binoculars and with the Telescope, It will reveal itself with greater detail.
If the skies aren’t clear on Monday, you should still be able to see Jupiter in all its glory the days before and after its peak.
New images of the planet were recently captured by NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope. The views of Jupiter that Webb captured will provide scientists with a lot more knowledge about Jupiter’s interior.
The images (shown in the featured image) were taken by the observatory’s Near-Infrared Camera (NIRCam), which has three specialised infrared filters.
Since infrared light is invisible to the human eye, the light has been mapped onto the visible spectrum. The longest wavelengths often appear redder, whereas the shortest wavelengths typically appear bluer. To turn the Webb data into pictures, citizen and scientist Judy Schmidt collaborated.