Astronomy fans, take note! Jupiter will become the brightest object in the sky besides the moon when it is in opposition to the Earth in March.

The celestial event is described as "an opposition" because the planet will be opposite the sun in our sky. This is the best time to see Jupiter because it will be at its closest point to earth.

The largest planet in the solar system comes to opposition every 13 months, and is well worth a look.

When is Jupiter in opposition in 2016?

Jupiter reaches opposition on Tuesday March 8 and will reach its highest point at around midnight. You can see it almost from dusk of Monday March 7 to dawn on Tuesday March 8.

You can find a chart of the path of Jupiter across the sky in 2016 on

Image of Jupiter with NASA's Hubble Space Telescope's Planetary Camera

How to see Jupiter's opposition

Dr Rhodri Evans said Jupiter is easy to find as it is so bright.

He said: "It is brighter than any star in the sky. The only point-like object which can outshine Jupiter is the planet Venus, which is currently in the west for a couple of hours after sunset.

"In early March, Jupiter will be towards the south at midnight and is in the constellation Leo, which itself is an easy to find constellation.

"Jupiter will rise in the east at about 5.40pm and be visible throughout the night, moving from east across the sky in the south and setting in the west at about 6.50am, about an hour after sunrise."

You can find timings for your nearest town here.

NASA say Jupiter outshines anything else in its patch of sky by far.

The website says with a small telescope you should be able to see the equatorial bands in the atmosphere, sometimes the Great Red Spot and up to four of the Gallilean moons.

But even before or after it reaches opposition you may be able to spot it.

The Stargazer's Guide to the Night Sky by Dr. Jason Lisle explains that Jupiter looks good for several months before or after opposition.

"From a practical perspective, a little bit after opposition is desirable because Jupiter then reaches its highest point in the sky before midnight; therefore you don't have to stay up as late to get a great view," he explains.

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