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Re: Look up in 2020! [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932358 02/29/20 08:53 PM
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What can we see in March?
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All five bright planets, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn, make an appearance in the night sky this month. Venus lies high and bright above the western horizon, so high that it sets well after midnight. Speedy Mercury makes its best appearance of the year for southern observers in the morning sky, while Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn find themselves gathered in the same small patch of sky in the southeast before dawn. And the prominent constellations Orion, Taurus, and Canis Major all move westward as March progresses inviting inspection with a small telescope or a pair of binoculars.

Click for more information from Cosmic Pursuits.


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Re: Look up in 2020! [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932416 03/11/20 06:11 PM
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EarthSky:
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This evening – March 11, 2020 – look eastward before going to bed and you just might catch the bright waning gibbous moon and the star Spica over the horizon. First look for the moon and that nearby bright star will be Spica, the brightest star in the constellation Virgo the Maiden. At far-northern latitudes, the moon and Spica rise quite late. So if you’re not one for staying up late, you can always get up before dawn to view the moon and Spica in the morning sky.


Moon, Spica, Arcturus


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Re: Look up in 2020! [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932465 03/24/20 04:47 PM
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Last night I went to close the curtains and - behold! - there was Venus shining brightly in the western sky.

EarthSky adds:
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This week, the brightest planet is in the west after sunset. It's the brightest thing up there, and, later this week, the young moon will join the view. Who could ask for more?


Crescent Moon and Venus March 25-27


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Re: Look up in 2020! [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932611 04/27/20 02:21 PM
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The Year in Space tells us about the sky this week:
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The early evening sky offers up two obvious treats this week - brilliant Venus, high in the west, and the waxing crescent Moon. On Monday evening, use a pair of binoculars to look at the Moon. Just about three Moon-widths to its right, you should see a cluster of stars known as M35. This beautiful cluster in the constellation Gemini is often visible to the naked eye under dark skies, but even in "average" skies it should be visible in almost any pair of binoculars. Try to wait until at least 9:30 or 10, when the sky has gotten as dark as it will get.

And keep in mind that if you look on Tuesday, the Moon will have moved to the left.

By Wednesday night, the Moon will be appear about 6° to the left (east) of the main stars of Gemini, Castor and Pollux. About an equal distance to the Moon's upper left (east), binoculars will reveal another, larger open cluster, M44, known as the Beehive.

By Thursday, the Moon will have passed to the other side of M44, and even though the Moon will be at first quarter (half illuminated), the cluster should still be visible in binoculars to its lower right. In the predawn sky, about an hour before sunrise, look for Mars, Saturn, and Jupiter (left to right) low in the southeastern sky, stretched out in a line about 20° long (about twice as wide as your fist held at arm's length). Jupiter, on the right, is brightest; Mars, noticeably reddish, is on the left end of the lineup.


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Re: Look up in 2020! [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932624 04/29/20 03:26 PM
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Dear Mona,

I live out "in the sticks" as they say, and we've always had a great view of the sky and all the stars and planets. I'm no astronomer, nor could I tell you anything at all about constellations or planets, but I must say since the "shelter in place" orders my sky is just even more gorgeous if that is possible! As much as I can I go out now and stand on my patio and just gaze. It's quiet and beautiful.

Mary Caliendo
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Re: Look up in 2020! [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932629 05/01/20 07:02 PM
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Cosmic Pursuits tells us about what's in the sky this month plus two great photos. Have a look.


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Re: Look up in 2020! [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932639 05/03/20 01:37 PM
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Finally, I got a chance to sit under the stars and I realized how much I miss them. While there weren't millions on the bright Alberta sky, I saw the old classic Dipper spill its load, and Venus was the brightest star. I also saw something that wasn't an airplane scoot across the sky, which I call the Mexican UFO's as I saw literally dozens when I lived on the Baja. I did some research on satellites the morning after and it seems that there's a ton of junk floating in space and impeding the life-work of many astronomers. And I read that a staggering number of proposed satellites is yet to be sent off into space. Is it progress? Regardless, I plan on doing more stargazing and getting back in the habit. Who knows what's out there.

Re: Look up in 2020! [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932676 05/11/20 11:56 AM
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From the Year in Space - May 11

The Sky this Week
Venus continues to attract attention in the western sky at dusk this week, but it is beginning its "plunge" toward the Sun, dropping lower each night. Its motion in the sky will be most obvious if you note its location at the same time each evening; try 9pm, as it will still be high enough and visible, even during twilight. Check it as early this week as you can, and then again early next week. You should see a difference in its position.

The Moon is a waning gibbous at the start of the week, rising around 1am. On Tuesday morning it will pass below Jupiter. Look for it about an hour before sunrise in the south. (Saturn is the bright "star" to the left of Jupiter.) Over the next few days, the Moon will move move to the lower left (toward the east) as it gets less illuminated. On Thursday and Friday, it will pass below Mars, which will be in the southeast about an hour before sunrise.

Here's an easy way to get acquainted with two bright stars. At 10pm this week, look due north. About 45° to the left (exactly northwest) and about 20° above the horizon (the width of two fists at arm's length) you should see the bright star Capella. Capella is the brightest star in the constellation Auriga, the charioteer. Back in January, at this same time, it would be passing nearly overhead, one of the brightest stars in the winter sky. It is disappearing from view now, sinking in the west, a memory of colder winter nights. At the same time, 10pm, turn 90° to your right (so you're now facing northeast). At a similar altitude (20°) you'll see a nearly identically bright star, Vega, the brightest star in the constellation Lyra. Just as Capella is a harbinger of winter, so Vega heralds the summer skies. It is rising now, and in a few months it, too, will wheel overhead at 10pm. It has been said that if you take the time to get to know the stars, you'll have friends that you can revisit every year, and that's certainly true as we bid farewell to Capella and greet Vega.


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Re: Look up in 2020! [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932883 07/27/20 12:12 PM
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The Sky This Week from Steve Cariddi

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The Moon is waxing this week, going from first quarter phase on Monday, to nearly full on Sunday. It will be visible in the early evening sky all week. On Saturday night, it will appear just below Jupiter, which will be rising, low in the southeast, at nightfall. On Sunday it will pass below Saturn (to Jupiter's left). Jupiter and Saturn, just a few degrees apart, will be prominent in the evening sky all week, being at their highest in the south at midnight. If you're out at midnight, take a look near the eastern horizon and you'll see bright Mars rising. If you're up just before dawn, look for bright Venus rising in the east, just to the upper left of the easily identifiable winter constellation Orion. Orion appears on his side as he begins his trip across the sky. To the lower left of Venus, close to the north-northeastern horizon, you might be able to spy Mercury at the same time.


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Re: Look up in 2020! [Re: Mona - Astronomy] #932909 08/01/20 08:42 PM
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Cosmic Pursuits says that
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Jupiter, Saturn and Mars are big, bright, and beautiful in a telescope, while brilliant Venus rises in the pre-dawn. The great Perseid meteor shower peaks mid month. And Comet NEOWISE slowly fades from view.


If you wonder when and where in the sky to look stars and planets, log in to HeavensAbove.com to give your location. Then find the interactive sky chart from the contents list.


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