Look up! Saturn to be at its closest on Monday
Get ready to catch sight of Saturn on Monday evening as it will be the brightest star that is closest to the Earth, the National Astronomical Research Institute of Thailand (NARIT) said.
In a Facebook post on Thursday, NARIT explained that for the first time in a year, Saturn will orbit to a position exactly opposite the Sun.
This position will see the Sun, Earth and Saturn lining up, with the planet standing at a distance of 1.325 billion kilometres – the closest to the Earth for the first time in one year.
Once the Sun sets, Saturn will be the brightest star in the Southeast direction and can be spotted with the naked eye if the skies are clear.
If observed via a telescope with at least a 4-inch refractor or a magnifying power of more than 50, then the planet’s rings A and B will be clearly visible.
NARIT is holding “Science Week 2022” from August 15 to 21, which includes observing Saturn on Monday from 6pm to 10pm.
Saturn can be also observed from the Princess Sirindhorn AstroPark in Chiang Mai and the regional observatory for the public in Nakhon Ratchasima, Chachoengsao and Songkhla.
Enthusiasts can participate in the “Science Week” for free or watch it live on NARIT’s Facebook page.
The agency said it has also cooperated with 560 schools nationwide and set up telescopes for students.
The names of participating schools can be found at https://bit.ly/MemberList-NARIT-DobsonianTelescope2022