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Saturn Viewing Season Underway

Saturn Viewing Season Underway

Apr. 12, 2012


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Graphic showing Saturn at opposition
Diagram of Saturn at opposition.
On April 15, 2012, Saturn reaches opposition, a configuration in which a planet is closest to Earth and therefore appears brighter. In mid-April, Saturn rises at sunset, transits at midnight (its highest elevation, making this the best time for telescopic views), and sets at sunrise.

Join Saturn Observation Campaign members and Night Sky Network Astronomy clubs worldwide who will be showing and celebrating Saturn through their telescopes this spring and summer. The ring inclination is something to watch as it tilts 13.7 degrees this month and increases to 19 degrees by year end, offering the best view of the rings since 2006. In addition, over the next few months you'll have no trouble seeing Saturn's largest moons, Titan, Dione, Iapetus, Rhea and Tethys.

For more information, see the Saturn Viewing Information section in the Saturn Observation Campaign.