National Astronomical Observatory of Japan

The Moon Coming Close to Jupiter (April, 2017)

April 10, 2017, 21:00, the sky of Tokyo
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A Chance to Observe the Spectacle of Bright Jupiter and the Moon

This is a great chance to observe Jupiter, which passed opposition on April 8. Around the time of opposition, Jupiter rises in the eastern sky during sunset, reaches culmination around midnight, and sets in the western sky during sunrise. Just next to Jupiter, the 1st magnitude star Spica in the constellation Virgo can be found. Compared to 1.0 magnitude Spica, -2.5 magnitude Jupiter stands out brightly.

From the 10th to 11th, the Moon passes close to Jupiter. It approaches closest on the morning of the 11th, so if you observe on the 10th and 11th, two days in a row, you can see the Moon passing through the starry background. It is a full moon on the 11th. Let’s enjoy Jupiter shining against the moonlight!

Reference: Ephemeris Computation Office

You can look up the rising and setting times for the Sun and the Moon, and the phases of the Moon in the “Koyomi Station” of the NAOJ Ephemeris Computation Office. You can find the appearance of the Moon and planets as seen from a typical city under “Sky Viewer.”