Jupiter, the king of the planets, is at opposition Aug. 19. Opposition is when an outer planet is on the opposite side of the Earth from the sun. At that time, they are the closest, largest and brightest. They are also up all night long.

With eyes, Jupiter is a bright white star. With mounted binoculars, it is a sphere with its four Galilean moons. With a modest telescope, it can be seen in all its majesty with dark belts and bright zones. On Aug. 19, at 9:30 p.m. (an hour after sunset), Jupiter is low in the southeast. It will cross the sky as the night wears on and be directly south at midnight. Dimmer Saturn can be seen to its west.

Public night is the first Friday each month from sunset to 10 p.m. Join us Sept. 3 to see the Return of the King. humbleisd.net/observatory 

Aaron Clevenson
Author: Aaron ClevensonEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
I am the observatory director at the Insperity Observatory in Humble ISD. I am also an adjunct astronomy professor at Lone Star College-Montgomery where I teach solar system astronomy and stars and galaxies astronomy. I am the author of the astronomy textbook, “Astronomy for Mere Mortals.” I am a past president of the North Houston Astronomy Club, and was the chair of Astronomy Day in Southeast Texas in 2015 and 2016. He is an observing program director with The Astronomical League, coordinates their Master Observer Progression Awards, and has authored six of their observing programs.

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