Closest approach the two planets occurred on the night of 20 to 21 September 2010. This time is also called 'night of confrontation', as the midnight sky Jupiter is opposite the rising sun, and soars high above the Earth. Among All night the inhabitants of heaven will be a brighter moon. Meetings of the Earth and Jupiter occur every 13 months when the Earth was once again ahead of Jupiter in a circle in their race around the sun. However, circling the sun in their orbits, neither the earth nor Jupiter does not circumscribe the right circles, and therefore are not always the same distance during the passage of the Earth.
September 20 Jupiter was at 75 million miles closer than in previous times, and the next maximum approximation expected only in 2022. View through a telescope shaking. Being so close, you can consider an unusually clear disk of Jupiter – and it is something to see. For example, the Great Red Spot, a cyclone in two widths of the Earth, which faced with yet another whirlwind called 'Red Spot Junior. " This phenomenon is a struggle between two storms the size of a planet to see to believe. In addition, the unique South equatorial belt of Jupiter (YUEP) has recently disappeared, perhaps, hiding behind high clouds. Researchers say that he may reappear at any time.
This bright, egress will be accompanied by a set of emerging spots on the planet and funnels of clouds which can be seen as the palm of a normal home telescope. And that was it flash? Amateur astronomers recently reported a surprising number of fireballs in Jupiter's atmosphere. Clearly, a significant The number of small asteroids or fragments of comets hit the giant planet and explode into its clouds. Scientists studying these phenomena, argue that such outbreaks can be observed up to several times a month. Finally, we can not forget about the satellites of Jupiter, because they also participate in a meeting with the Earth. This is worlds the size of a whole planet with active volcanoes (Io), the possible existence of subsurface oceans (Europe), broad-brimmed craters (Callisto) and the mysterious trenches encircling (Ganymede). When Galileo discovered the satellites 400 years ago, they looked only tiny points of light, visible in his primitive telescope. Large, modern amateur Telescopes reveal to the audience planetary disks with colored markers. And you wonder: What would have thought about it Galileo? Answer: 'I get up at midnight! " Astrogorizont – NASA news in Russian