Saturn's Alignment With Moon Gives Rare Chance To Spot It In The Night Sky (PICTURES)

Tonight Is A Rare Chance To See Saturn With The Naked Eye

For amateur astronomers who want to get a glimpse of Saturn, today is your lucky day.

The ringed planet is usually relatively difficult to spot because it lacks the tremendous brightness of Venus and Jupiter. or the red colour of Mars.

From Earth, with the naked eye, Saturn is a white-yellow colour, and isn't exceptionally bright - making it pretty similar to many of the stars in the sky.

But a relatively rare alignment of the Moon and the sixth planet from the Sun this week will make it easier than usual to find it in the night sky.

Here's how to find it - wait until it's dark (obviously), and then look a third of the way up from the horizon to find the waxing Moon. It will be almost full and very bright. Then simply look up and to the left to find a bright star which isn't twinkling.

That's Saturn.

And if you have a fairly powerful telescope, it might also be possible to see one of Saturn's moons, Titan, which appears as a small pale orange star close to the planet.

Unfortunately finding Saturn might be made slightly more complex by the fact that the Moon will appear to move more quickly compared to Saturn, and so by dawn Saturn will be directly above the Moon and not to the left.

It might also be hindered by the weather.

But don't worry - if you know where to look Saturn will remain easily viewable in the night sky, though not always as handily near to the Moon, for most of the summer. has more details - though make sure to modify the times from the US to the UK.


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