July 2007

See Amateur Images of Jupiter

See Jupiter Tonight

This image was generated from Stellarium program. You can generate your own view of the sky for your location and local time using this or other programs.

Located near the constellation Scorpio, the focus of the Juno mission currently dominates the night sky. To find Jupiter, face south on a clear evening and look for the brightest object. The giant of our solar system shines brightly above Scorpio's red star Antares.

While observing Jupiter, mark the position of the planet with respect to Antares. By checking up on Jupiter frequently over several weeks, you will see the planet moving across the sky relative to the fixed star. This movement is why the Greeks used the name "planet" or "wanderer" to identify solar-orbiting planets versus fixed stars.

Amateur image of Jupiter, July 19 2007

Using a modest pair of binoculars braced against a tree or a house, you can easily see the satellites of Jupiter much in the same way Galileo did when he discovered them in 1610. As you watch them from night to night, you will see them move around the planet.

There are many programs and links on the web that you can use to find Jupiter in the sky. Record your journey with Jupiter by using a camera to capture the view through a small telescope. Using these images, you can follow the changes in Jupiter's appearance. Here is more information on using a digital camera with your telescope.