Saturn At Opposition: Seize The Moment!

( Saturn reaches opposition on July 20, 2020. Download the stargazing app Star Walk 2 for iOS and Android to find celestial objects in the sky above you and determine the optimal viewing time for your current location. )

How and when to see the opposition of Saturn?

Saturn will reach opposition on July 20, 2020, at 22:14 GMT glowing at magnitude 0.1. Saturn is the sixth planet from the Sun and the most remote world that can be seen with the naked eye as a golden star in the sky. But you’ll need a telescope to see its beautiful rings. The new Moon will be on July 20, 2020, so Saturn will enjoy its special day in the moon-free sky.

( A planet at opposition aligns with Earth and the Sun in an approximately straight line while Earth is placed between this planet and the Sun. )

The Lord of the Rings

Saturn at opposition arouses observers’ interest because near opposition Saturn’s rings appear exceptionally bright. This phenomenon is known as the opposition surge or Seeliger Effect, which is named after German astronomer Hugo von Seeliger, who observed the brightening of Saturn’s rings at opposition in 1887.

( The opposition surge or Seeliger Effect occurs near the opposition of Saturn: rings of the planet appear much brighter than at any other point. )



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