Jupiter has been its closest approach to Earth since 1963, NASA says

Jupiter will make its closest approach to Earth in 59 years on Monday, according to NASA.

The gas giant, the largest planet in our solar system, will be in opposition, meaning Earth is directly between it and the Sun, said Trina L. Ray, deputy science manager for the Europa Clipper mission at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.

The space agency originally said Jupiter would be its closest approach to Earth in 70 years, but corrected its statement after spotting the error, a NASA spokesman said.

According to NASA, there will be about 367 million miles between Earth and Jupiter. Jupiter is about 600 million miles from our home planet at its furthest point, the space agency said.

Jupiter is in opposition about every 13 months, the time it takes for Earth to orbit the Sun in relation to Jupiter, according to EarthSky.

Neither Earth nor Jupiter orbits the Sun in a perfect circle, causing each opposition to be a slightly different distance, said Ray, who is also NASA’s investigative scientist for the Radar for Europa Assessment and Sounding: Ocean to Near-Surface or REASON is.


Jupiter will appear brighter and larger in the sky, making the event a great opportunity to take a look, NASA said.

The gaseous planet will rise around sunset and appear pearly white to the unaided eye, said Patrick Hartigan, a professor of physics and astronomy at Rice University in Houston.

With binoculars or a telescope, you can see the planet’s bands, according to NASA.

Stargazers might also see three or four of Jupiter’s moons, including Europa, Ray said.

“Since I’m working on a spacecraft that we’re going to send to the Jupiter system to explore Europa,” she said. “I’m always happy to see Jupiter and even Europa with my own eyes.”

Use the Old Farmer’s Almanac’s Visible Planets Calculator for an accurate time when to look up at the sky.

Saturn and Mars will also be visible, so try to spot those planets while observing Jupiter’s opposition, Hartigan said.


According to Farmer’s Almanac, three more full moons will occur this year:

October 9: Hunter’s Moon

November 8: Beaver Moon

December 7: Cold moon

Native American tribes have different names for the full moons, such as For example, the Cheyenne tribe’s “drying grass moon” for the September full moon and the Arapaho tribe’s “cracking trees” for the December full moon.

Catch the peak of these upcoming meteor shower events later this year, according to EarthSky’s 2022 Meteor Shower Guide:

Draconids: 8th-9th Centuries October

Orionids: 20th-21st October

South Taurids: November 5th

Northern Taurids: November 12th

Leonids: 17th-18th Centuries November

Gemini: 13th-14th December

Ursids: 22.-23. December

And according to Farmer’s Almanac, there will be another total lunar eclipse and partial solar eclipse in 2022. The October 25 partial solar eclipse will be visible to people in parts of Greenland, Iceland, most of Europe, northeast Africa, and western and central Asia.

The November 8 total lunar eclipse can be seen in Asia, Australia, the Pacific, South America, and North America between 3:02 a.m. and 8:56 a.m. ET. But for the people of eastern North America, the moon will set during this time.

Wear proper solar eclipse glasses to see solar eclipses safely, as the sunlight can damage your eyes.

https://abc7.com/jupiter-earth-nasa-outer-space/12268095/ Jupiter has been its closest approach to Earth since 1963, NASA says

Laura Coffey

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