SKYWATCH: Saturn to Dance with Moon tonight

SKYWATCH: Saturn to Dance with Moon tonight

June 19, 2019

Indians are privileged to witness a spectacular astronomical spectacle tonight. This celestial event is referred to as ‘Occultation of Saturn’. Anytime after 7 pm in the south-eastern direction, one can see a white dot exceedingly close to Moon, which is the most gorgeous planet in the solar system, Saturn. Tonight, Saturn can be seen very adjacent to waning gibbous Moon in the constellation ‘Sagittarius’.

This year, Occultation of Saturn can be seen throughout the year and it happens almost every month. This gas giant Saturn is placed between the constellations ‘Sagittarius’ and ‘Capricornus’. On July 10, Saturn will have very close encounter with Earth and this astronomical event is called ‘Opposition of Saturn’. Jupiter and Saturn have planned to dominate this year captivatingly! From today, one can witness the planets ‘Mars’ and ‘Mercury’ in the western direction after sunset clearly. Occultation of Saturn can be seen clearly from South America and Africa, conspicuously.

It will be a wonderful opportunity for Observational Astronomers and sky gazers for Astrophotography. By the use of high resolution camera or charged coupled devices, one can clearly take photographs of this astounding celestial feast after 7 pm.

– Dr. S.A. Mohan Krishna, Observational Astronomer


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