For anybody who has interest in words like the solar system, galaxies, and planets, there is a good news for them as they will have the opportunity to see the largest planet in our solar system, Jupiter, from Earth. Accuweather has reported that on May 8, Jupiter will at opposition, which means that the planet will be the closest to Earth, an opportunity which comes once in a year.
For the unknown, ‘Opposition’ is a state of any particular planet when it has Earth between itself and the Sun. The outer planet with said to be at ‘opposition’ as from Earth’s point of view, it is exactly opposite to Sun. “When a planet like Jupiter is at opposition, it is near the point in its orbit where it is closest to the Earth, making it appear brighter than it does during any other time in its orbit,” Accuweather reported.
From Tuesday night, May 8 to Tuesday morning, May 9, Jupiter will be at opposition and this also means that the planet will be visible all night long as it will be rising from the East around sunset and will set into the West around sunrise.
While no telescope is needed in order to view Jupiter as it is considered one of the brightest natural objects, standing out among all the countless stars, a telescope or a good pair of binoculars will indeed help you see Jupiter’s four largest moons which are known as the Galilean Moons. On the other hand, a larger set of telescope will reveal bands of colorful clouds present in Jupiter’s atmosphere.
That being said, this is just the first among three such incidences when ‘opposition’ will occur in the next couple of months. On June 27, Saturn will reach opposition and despite the planet being almost twice as far away from our planet than Jupiter, it will be still visible to a naked eye. A month later to Saturn’s opposition, Mars will also be visible from Earth. Interestingly, this will also mark Mars’ closest approach to Earth since the year 2003.