Rare and interesting event to take place – The Bay’s News First – SunLive

In the early hours of Friday April 26, according to the Tauranga Astronomical Society, a rare and interesting event will take place.

That event is the occultation, or hiding, of the planet Saturn by the Moon.

“As viewed from Tauranga, the Moon will begin to pass win front of Saturn from 12.33am, hiding Saturn from view,” says the Tauranga Astronomical Society in a Facebook post.

“Saturn will be hidden from view for about an hour and 10 minutes as the Moon glides by in its month long orbit around the Earth.

“Saturn will emerge from behind the Moon at 1.44am, apparently appearing from nowhere as it emerges from behind the dark half of the Moon.

“All the stars, planets and the Moon appear to move from East to West across the sky – but this is due to the 24 hour rotation of the Earth from West to East.

“The Moon is in fact orbiting the Earth from West to East – and we can see this motion against the stars and in this case, against Saturn.

“Saturn will be 9.75 AU away which is about 1.46 billion km.

“The Moon will be about 395,000km away from the Earth at this time – further away than its average distance of 384,400km.

“At 1.44am, Saturn will reappear with its magnificent rings leading the way.

“Like a solar or lunar eclipse, this is a rare event so if you have the opportunity to view the Moon through a telescope or a good pair of binoculars, this event would be worth staying up for.”

For more information and to check out the video about this event, head to theTauranga Astronomical Society’s Facebook page.

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