Jupiter viewing UK weather - clear skies with just a scattering of showers tonight

Binoculars or telescopes at the ready as Jupiter will appear larger and brighter in the night sky on the 26th/27th September. The UK forecast does include clear skies but also showers in the cool flow.

Jupiter viewing UK weather - clear skies with just a scattering of showers tonight

Issued: 26th September 2022 12:13
Updated: 26th September 2022 17:48

Jupiter will make its closest approach to Earth in 59 years. For those with a telescope, this might give a great opportunity to see some of the bands, the giant red spot and also Jupiter’s moons. For those just having a look without, it will be the brightest object in the sky, looking east.

UK weather for viewing Jupiter September 26th

Of course, we’ll need clear skies and there is hope but also a scattering of showers. We are in a cool north to north-westerly flow thanks to a cold front which swept right down the UK today. It has left clearer skies but the shower cloud will still be problematic overnight for a few places. The radar from this morning gives a good idea of how the UK weather will still look after dark. There are plenty of clear skies over southern Scotland and northern England. Wales, Northern Ireland, southwest England and Norfolk will keep a scattering of showers this evening and overnight but there will be gaps in between, so a medium chance of seeing Jupiter.

Radar and Satellite image Mon 26th Sept pm showing showers and cloud cover

After a few gaps this evening for Northern Scotland with a medium chance of a view, this falls to low as cloud increases and bands of heavier showers move down over the Islands, north Highland and the Moray Firth. There will be a fresh NW wind making it feel chilly but still, lee breaks in the cloud to the south of the mountains. The wind will be backing slightly and then feeds more showers into Cheshire and around Morecambe Bay. Eastern England then becomes drier and clearer, so high chance here with more of central Britain, southern and SE England being clear and dry with a high chance of a clear view. The showery weather from Cheshire will make its way further inland before dawn so there could be more cloud and a few showers reach down to Birmingham, Warwickshire and Buckinghamshire by daybreak.

In December 2020 Jupiter gave another celestial show with the Great Conjunction when Jupiter and Saturn appeared to pass each other. They do this about once every 20 years but the 2020 event was the closest in nearly 400 years and it had been 800 years since passing this close and at night.

Great Conjuction Jupiter Dec 2020

Dec 2020 Saturn and Jupiter Great Conjuction

This time it is a more solitary Jupiter, not only on its closest pass for a while but it is reaching opposition on September 26th.

“All the planets in the Solar System orbit around the Sun. At certain points during these orbits, the Earth finds itself directly between the Sun and another planet. This is the moment at which that planet is said to be 'in opposition'. “ Greenwich Observatory

This makes the planet appear bigger and brighter to us, it is fully illuminated by the sun. Jupiter will be bright enough to be seen with the naked eye, but the best views will be with binoculars or a telescope. The new moon was on the 25th.

“Jupiter's closest approach to Earth rarely coincides with opposition, which means this year's views will be extraordinary." NASA

Check out the Netweather Science and Astronomy threads in the community forum. Top image NASA Jupiter

Tags: UK Weather  Outdoors

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