Saturn, a giant planet millions of miles away brought together people of a community in unison when an elderly astronomer in New York set up his telescope in the middle of a busy street to give people a chance to gaze at one of the universe’s wonders.
Joe Delfausse, an 82-year-old Brooklyn resident, was spotted by a large crowd with his telescope, attempting to observe Saturn. Despite a warning from a driver, the rest of the traffic managed to move around the stargazers, showcasing the man’s talent, the New York Post reported.
Saturn, the 6th planet from the sun, is the only planet people are able to see from the farthest distance of 800 million miles away from Earth with the naked eye.
Locals on Sunday, headed outside to look toward the southeast to view the giant planet, a bright yellowish “star” all through the night until sunrise, as it reached opposition, positioning itself directly opposite the sun, ABC News 5 reported.
Planets at opposition rise just after sunset and are visible until dawn. It also means this is the biggest and brightest Saturn will appear all year long, although it will continue to look bigger and brighter in the weeks following opposition.
Many astronomers recommend that everyone view Saturn at least once in their lives, among all the planets that may be seen.
Delfausse stood like a proud dad as each person dipped their head to gaze into the lens.
“I can show them the heavens,” he told the Guardian, adding that his telescope always piques the interest of often-wary New Yorkers.
“All of a sudden, they drop their guard,” he said. “They’re talking to the people in front and behind them. I guess we’re all starved for connection, and when you see someone’s eyes widen because they’ve never seen anything like that, you feel like you’ve made a difference.”
Additionally, Saturn will be visible until next February as well.
While they were able to view the planet with binoculars, some skywatchers captured detailed images of Saturn, its rings and its moons with the help of their telescope.