FAIRWAY, KS (KCTV) -- We’ve got a treat rising in the sky tonight in Kansas City. Jupiter, the largest planet in our solar system, should be the brightest object in our sky tonight. Check out the graphic below. We should have optimal viewing conditions tonight.
A clear sky, light wind and cool temperatures in the 60s. Right after sunset look just above the horizon in the south-southeast sky. Jupiter will keep climbing from this position and will be at its highest point around midnight.
We can see Jupiter because the earth is between the sun and Jupiter. That means Jupiter is rising in the east as the sun is setting in the west. That’s called being in “opposition” and happens once a year. Jupiter is made up of hydrogen and helium and a lot of other gases. The planet has 79 moons.
Apparently, Jupiter’s gravity is so strong other space objects are pulled into its orbit. We’re told tonight’s perfect viewing conditions mean you should be able to see Jupiter’s four largest moons with just a pair of binoculars. And if you have a telescope, you should be able to see one of Jupiter’s cloud belts or maybe, if you’re lucky, the Great Red Spot.
Sounds like something you won’t want to miss.