An occultation is a fantastic phenomenon to see. An occultation occurs when one celestial body goes behind another. In this instance, Saturn will be occulted (or go behind) the Moon on the evening of 8th September.
When to look: Sunday 8th September 2019. The following times are approximate. It’s best to keep an eye on Saturn in the hour or so leading up to the occultation.
In Perth, Saturn disappears at approximately 10.01pm and reappears at 11.02pm.
Further north in WA, Saturn will disappear at about the same time but will reappear about 30 minutes later than in Perth. Here Saturn’s path of occultation will be more towards the middle of the Moon.
On the south coast of WA, Saturn will disappear later and reappear earlier.
Which direction to look: North west
It may be difficult to see this with the naked eye, but it’s definitely worth having a look. The Moon will be bright but because Saturn is a bright object as well, you should be able to see it disappear behind the side of the Moon that’s not lit by the Sun.
For Telescopes and Binoculars
If you have a telescope, this is worth having a closer look at. Try and take an image if you get the opportunity. Even and image via a smart phone is worth trying. The image above is one taken by hovering a smart phone over the eyepiece of a telescope!
Want More Stargazing Tips?
There’s always something interesting happening in the night sky and country WA is the best place to catch all the action!