1,844 days ago
Dominic Ford, Editor
From the Outer Planets feed
Jupiter's orbit around the Sun will carry it to its closest point to the Earth – its perigee – passing within 4.40 AU of us.
Jupiter reaches perigee at around the time when it passes the Earth in its orbit. At this time, the Sun, Earth and Jupiter lie in a straight line, with the Earth in the middle.
Consequently, Jupiter appears almost exactly opposite the Sun in the sky – a configuration called opposition, when Jupiter reaches its highest point in the sky at midnight and is visible for much of the night.
Every perigee of Jupiter is associated with a near-simultaneous opposition.
On this occasion, Jupiter will attain a maximum angular diameter of 43.8 arcsec at closest approach, and a maximum brightness of magnitude -2.5 .
Even at its closest approach to the Earth, it is never possible to distinguish Jupiter as more than a star-like point of light with the naked eye, though a simple pair of binoculars is sufficient to reveal it as a disk of light.
From Fairfield , it will be visible between 20:29 and 04:59. It will become accessible around 20:29, when it rises to an altitude of 7° above your south-eastern horizon. It will reach its highest point in the sky at 00:44, 32° above your southern horizon. It will become inaccessible around 04:59 when it sinks below 7° above your south-western horizon.
A chart of the path of Jupiter across the sky in 2018 can be found here, and a chart of its rising and setting times here.
The position of Jupiter at the moment it passes perigee will be:
|Object||Right Ascension||Declination||Constellation||Magnitude||Angular Size|
The coordinates above are given in J2000.0.
The sky on 10 May 2018
|The sky on 10 May 2018|
24 days old
All times shown in EDT.
The circumstances of this event were computed using the DE430 planetary ephemeris published by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL).
This event was automatically generated by searching the ephemeris for planetary alignments which are of interest to amateur astronomers, and the text above was generated based on an estimate of your location.
|08 May 2018||– Jupiter at opposition|
|10 Jun 2019||– Jupiter at opposition|
|14 Jul 2020||– Jupiter at opposition|
|19 Aug 2021||– Jupiter at opposition|