Sunday, April 28, 2013

See Saturn at its Best & Brightest

April 25, 2013: The Solar System is a beautiful place filled with wonders that NASA space probes are only beginning to discover.  There's a tendency, though, for people to become indifferent; every year Hubble, Cassini, MESSENGER and other spacecraft beam back gigabytes of jaw-dropping images.  After a while, you don't have any more "gasps" left in you.

Well, maybe just one more. Inhale deeply, because at the end of April, Saturn will put on a breathtaking display.

Saturn Opposition (splash)
A new ScienceCast video (in English) explores this month's close encounter with Saturn. Play it!
No space probe is required to see it. Just set up a telescope in your back yard--even a small department store ‘scope will do--and point the optics toward the constellation Virgo. Saturn is there, not far from the bright star Spica.

On April 28th, Saturn makes its closest approach to Earth, appearing bigger and brighter than at any other time in 2013. Astronomers call this event "an opposition," because Saturn will be opposite the sun in the skies of Earth.  The golden planet rises at sunset, soars almost overhead at midnight, and stays up all night long.

More - Link >>> http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2013/25apr_saturn/

Source: NASA Science News.

gaw

Glenn A. Walsh, Project Director,
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* Astronomer, Educator, Optician John A. Brashear:
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