KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysians will get the rare opportunity of seeing the planet Saturn with a telescope, binoculars or even with the unaided eye when it is opposite the sun after sunset on June 3.
National Space Agency (Angkasa) research officer at the Langkawi National Observatory, Farahana Kamarudin, said that at this time, the ringed planet would be at its closest to Earth.
“This date will give the best position for researchers and astronomy enthusiasts to view the planet because it will be at its brightest, making it easy for viewing and recording.
“If you are viewing it with the unaided eye, it can be seen as a bright star,” she told Bernama.
She said the planet would be in the east with the constellation Scorpio.
Farahana said Saturn could be viewed in an open space which is unhindered by clouds or light pollution.
“In fact, if you use the smartphone, you can use the Google Sky or StarMap software to help track the planet,” she added.
She said Saturn takes 29.5 years (10,759 days) to complete its orbit around the Sun.
She added that Earth would be in this position every 378 days, with the next opportunity on June 15, 2017.
The last time Saturn was at this position was on May 23, 2015. – BERNAMA