Night Sky for July 2019

Saturn and Jupiter Rule the Night Sky

By Bob Berman
July 15, 2019
Planet Saturn

Welcome to the Sky Watch for July 2019. This month, see Jupiter and Saturn shine all night long. Bob Berman provides more details about the night sky highlights.

Sky Watch July 2019

by Bob Berman, as featured in The 2019 Old Farmer’s Almanac

In July, Saturn and Jupiter rule the night sky. Don’t confuse the two large planets. Both rise around sunset in the east, but Jupiter is far brighter and climbs higher in the sky, whereas Saturn is quite close to the southeastern horizon.

  • On July 2, a total solar eclipse sweeps across central Chile and Argentina. It won’t be visible from North America this time.
  • Mercury and Mars hover just above the thin crescent Moon on the 3rd, low in dusk’s western twilight. 
  • Earth is farthest from the Sun (at aphelion) on the 4th.  See our Sky Map for July skygazing.

Saturn’s Opposition

  • Saturn reaches opposition the night of Tuesday, July 9, 2019, at a bright but not brilliant magnitude 0.1. The Ringed Planet rises at sunset above the southeastern horizon to the left of the constellation Sagittarius. It will reach its highest point at about 1:00 a.m. local time above the southern horizon.
  • Saturn is next to the almost-full Moon on the 15th. This will be easy to see! Just look for the almost-full Moon as darkness falls and Saturn appears right next to it (on the left side)!
    • The ringed planet is at its brightest and best for the entire year. Saturn will still be visible next to the full Moon on the 16th.
  • The full Moon crests on July 16. It will undergo a partial lunar eclipse! This lunar eclipse is not visible from North America, but will be visible from much of the world. See the complete July Moon Guide for times and more information!
  • Meanwhile, Jupiter remains optimally placed and is nicely up in the southeast at nightfall as the night’s brightest “star.” The Giant Planet, which had its annual opposition on the 10th of June, now sets about 90 minutes before astronomical twilight begins.
  • Mars is gone by month’s end. Mercury is not visible without a telescope.
  • Venus is getting lost in the Sun’s glare now. The brightest planet rises just before sunrise, low in the east.

To find all the planet rise and set times, just check the Almanac rise/set calculator.


The 2019 Old Farmer's Almanac


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