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Saturn closest to earth today

Night gazers got a delightful experience with planet Saturn coming closest to the Earth and appearing biggest and brightest.

india Updated: Jan 28, 2006 13:32 IST
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Night gazers got a delightful experience today when planet Saturn was closest to Earth and appeared biggest and brightest, a space scientist has said.

Indore-based Maharaja Ranjit Singh College Director Ram S Shrivastava said Saturn -- which normally is at a distance of 945 million miles from Earth -- would be at a minimum distance of 755 million miles today.

Saturn rose after sunset on the eastern horizon and will set on west at sunrise. The planet's sight was to be most attractive during midnight.

The planet's famous rings could be viewed through a small telescope, he said.

Saturn is visible in the Gemini Constellation (Mithun rashi). Just above the planet, there are two famous stars of Gemini, Castor and Pollux.

Dr Shrivastava said the planet's view from earth is of special interest because of its visibility with maximum broadness of 1,76,000 miles from edge to edge. The planet is 75,000 miles wide -- second largest after Jupiter.

First Published: Jan 28, 2006 13:32 IST