On Sunday and Monday nights there will be an extremely bright ‘star’ next to the Moon high in the sky. It is in fact the largest planet in the solar system , Jupiter, which is currently at its closest to the Earth.
“This will be one of the most spectacular events visible to the general public during 2016!” said David Moore, Editor of Astronomy Ireland magazine.
The event is so spectacular that it will be visible from all over the world. So, Astronomy Ireland is setting up powerful telescopes to give the public a close up view of both the Moon and Jupiter.
“It is really only a line-of-sight effect with Jupiter being 2,000 times further away than the Moon, but to the general public it will look like the two brightest objects in the night sky will be beside one another in the most impressive display the Moon can ever put on with another celestial object,” said Mr. Moore.
“This is definitely an event for your ‘bucket list’, seeing the two brightest objects in the night sky closer than you will ever see them again in your life,” he said.
SPECIAL EVENT MONDAY APRIL 18 AT 9pm
The pair will technically be closest on Sunday night, which will turn heads as people wonder “what is that extremely bright object next to the Moon?”. Said Mr Moore
They will be almost as closes on Monday night so Astronomy Ireland is going to set up some of the most powerful telescopes in the world that any member of the public is ever likely to use.
“The Moon is always stunning in a telescope, with thousands of craters peppering its surface and vast lava plains and huge mountains all visible in the giant telescopes. It’s an amazing sight that never fails to amaze me even after years of seeing it in a large telescope.” said Mr Moore.
For details, and a map to Astronomy Ireland Headquarters where the telescopes will be set up visit: www.astronomy.ie