Posts Tagged ‘Pleiades’

October 2010

Friday, October 1st, 2010

Lunar Events

The New Moon for October occurs on Thursday, October 7th, which makes the weekend of October 9-10 as the best weekend for dark sky observing this month.

Since the Full Moon of November was the Harvest Moon, the Full Moon on October 22nd is the Hunter’s Moon.

At the end of October the Moon passes two prominent star clusters.

Moon and M45
On October 25th the waning, gibbous moon passes about 2° from the asterism Pleiades (M45).

Moon and M44
On October 30th, the Last Quarter Moon passes within 4°30′ of the Beehive Cluster (M44).

Mercury

Mercury begins this month in the constellation Virgo (The Maiden) until October 25th then it crosses into the constellation Libra (The Balance).

October 8th finds Mercury and Saturn in conjunction passing within 0°35′ from each other. Mercury and Saturn

Unfortunately Mercury returns into the glare of the morning sunrise early in the month, around Ocotober 3rd, and will be difficult to observe for almost the entire month.

Venus

Moving in retrograde, Venus is the Evening Star for October and begins this month in the constellation Libra (The Balance) a mere 6°30′ from the planet Mars. On October 19th, Venus moves into the constellation Virgo (The Maiden).

Venus, Mars and Moon On October 9th, Venus, Mars and the waxing, crescent moon are found together only about 7°45′ apart.
By October 21st, Venus sets at the same time as the Sunset, however it is far enough South that it might still be visible at sunset. Venus
Venus By October 30th, Venus rises with the sunrise again it is far enough south that it show be visible at this time.

Mars

Mars is observable all month during the evening hours of October.  Mars begins the month in the constellation Libra (The Balance) and on October 27th crosses into the constellation Scorpius (the Scorpion).

At the start of October Mars sets around 8:00 pm (PDT) and by the end of the month sets around 7:15 pm (PDT).

Venus and Mars
On October 4th, Venus and Mars pass within 6°35’ of each other

On October 9th, Venus, Mars and the waxing, crescent moon are found together only about 7°45′ apart. Venus, Mars and Moon

Jupiter

Jupiter is observable all month, all night.  Jupiter can be found in the constellation Pisces (The Fish) at the start of October and on October 14th crosses into the constellation Aquarius (The Water Bearer).

Uranus is in close proximity to Jupiter all month and finding Jupiter is a good first step to finding Uranus. At the beginning of October Jupiter and Uranus are less than 1°30’ from each other, as Jupiter, in retrograde,  moves away from and by the end of the month they are still only 3°15’ apart. 

Jupiter, Uranus and Moon
On October 19th, Jupiter, Uranus and the waxing, gibbous moon are all within 6° from each other.

Saturn

Saturn, located in the constellation Virgo (The Maiden) until December 2012, emerges into the morning hours around October 18th. Saturn is observable the latter half of the month and by the end of October rises around 5:05 am (PDT).

Uranus

Uranus is located in the constellation Pisces (The Fish) until May 2012.  Uranus is visible all night, all month.

Uranus is in close proximity to Jupiter all month and finding Jupiter is a good first step to finding Uranus. At the beginning of October Jupiter and Uranus are less than 1°30’ from each other, as Jupiter, in retrograde,  moves away from and by the end of the month they are still only 3°15’ apart. 

Jupiter, Uranus and Moon
On October 19th, Jupiter, Uranus and the waxing, gibbous moon are all within 6° from each other.

Neptune

Neptune is located in the constellation Capricornus (The Sea Goat) until January 2011. Neptune is observable until the very early morning hours. At the start of October Neptune sets around 3:30 am (PDT) and by the end of the month Neptune sets around 1:30 am (PDT).

Neptune and Moon
On October 17th, the waxing, gibbous Moon passes within 4°20’ of Neptune.

Pluto

Pluto is located in the constellation Sagittarius (The Archer) until the year 2023.  Pluto can be observed this month during the evening and late evening hours. Pluto sets around 11:30 pm (PDT) at the start of October and by the end of the month  sets around 9:32 pm (PDT).

PLuto
October 15th - Pluto’s relative position in the month of October.

June 2010

Tuesday, June 1st, 2010

Summer Solstice

Summer begins on June 21st, when the Summer Solstice occurs. The Summer Solstice occurs when the tilt of the Earth is pointed directly toward the Sun.  This point marks the beginning of Summer.  The Summer Solstice has the longest amount of daylight and the shortest night.

Lunar Events

The New Moon for June occurs on Saturday June 12th, which makes that weekend June 12-13 a fantastic weekend for dark sky observing.

The Full Moon for June occurs on June 16th, and is known as the Full Buck Moon or Full Hay Moon.  Since it is also the closest Full moon to the Summer Solstice, it is also the Full Honey Moon.

There is also a Umbral Lunar Eclipse at this Full Moon on June 26th.  The Eclipse will be visible to the West coast of North and South America, the Pacific, Australia and some parts of Southeast Asia.

Please note: On Quicktime movies below, Window 64-bit may not display the controls to play the movie. Simply double-click on the movie to play.



This movie shows the eclipse as viewed from the Moon. The Area seen of the Earth is the area that can see the Earth’s shadow on the Moon. Each frame is one minute.



This movie shows the eclipse as viewed from Honolulu, Hawaii. Each frame is one minute.




This movie shows the Lunar Eclipse as view from Los Angeles. The moon sets about an hour after the eclipse maximum so the end of the eclipse will be missed by those of us on the West Coast.

From Los Angeles (my local time) the Lunar Eclipse will not be seen to completetion since Sunrise (and Moon Set) occur a bit over an hour after the Eclipse hits its maximum point. Los Angeles time table (PDT) is as follows:

Partial Penumbra phase begins 01:59:49 (-160 minutes).
Partial phase begins 03:18:49 (-81 minutes).
Eclipse Maximum 04:39:49 PDT
Sunrise in Los Angeles 5:43:29 PDT
Partial phase ends 06:00:49 (+81 minutes).
Partial Penumbra phase ends 07:19:49 (+160 minutes).

Mercury

Mercury is visible as the Morning Star in June until June 19th, when it disappears into the glare of the sunrise.

Mercury begins June in the constellation Aries (The Ram) and on June 5th, crosses into the constellation Taurus (The Bull).  On June 25th, hidden by the glare of the Sun,  Mercury crosses into the constellation Gemini (The Twins).

Venus

Venus is the Evening Star this month.

Venus begins June in the constellation Gemini (The Twins) and on June 12th, croses into the constellation Cancer (The Crab), and finally on June 20th, Venus will move into the constellation Leo (The Lion).

Venus and Moon
On June 14th, a waxing, crescent Moon will passes within 4°35’ of Venus.

Vnus and M44
On June 20th, Venus passes through the Beehive Cluster (M44).

Mars

Mars is observable in the evening hours of June all month, in the constellation Leo (The Lion).

Mars sets around 12:50 am (PDT) at the start of June, and by the end of the month sets around 11:30 pm (PDT).

Mars and Regulus
June 6th finds Mars in conjunction with the Star Regulus, passing
within 0°50’.

Mars and Moon
On June 17th, the waxing, crescent Moon passes within 5°50’ of Mars.

Jupiter

Jupiter is observable in the morning hours of June in the constellation Pisces (The Fish).  At the start of the month Jupiter rises around 2:15 am (PDT), and by the end of the month, Jupiter sets around 12:20 am (PDT).

Jupiter, Uranus and Moon
On June 5th a waning, crescent Moon will pass less than 5°40’ of Jupiter.

Jupiter and Uranus
On June 7th, the planets Jupiter and Uranus are in conjunction and
will be less than 0°25’ of each other.

Saturn

Saturn is located in the constellation Virgo (The Maiden) until December 2012. Saturn is observable from the evening to late evening hours of June. At the start of the month, Saturn set around 2:20 am (PDT) and by the end of the month, Saturn sets around 12:20 am (PDT).

Saturn and Moon
On June 18th, the First Quarter Moon passes within 8°20’ of Saturn.

Uranus

Uranus can be observed in the constellation Pisces (The Fish) until May 2012. Uranus can be observed during the morning hours of June in the vicinity of JupiterUranus rises around 2:15 am (PDT) at the start of June and by the end of the month rises around 12:20 pm (PDT).

Jupiter, Uranus and Moon
On June 5th a waning, crescent Moon will pass less than 5°15’ of Uranus.

Jupiter and Uranus
On June 7th, the planets Jupiter and Uranus are in conjunction and will
be less than 0°25’ of each other.

Neptune

Neptune is found in the constellation Aquarius (The Water Bearer) until August. Neptune rises during the late evening hours of June; rising around 12:30 am (PDT) at the start of the month and around 10:55 pm (PDT) by the end of the month.

N2eptune and Moon
On June 3rd, the waning, gibbous Moon passes within 4° of Neptune.

Neptune and Moon
On June 30th, the waning, crescent moon rises about 4° from Neptune.

Pluto

Pluto is found in the constellation Sagittarius (The Archer) until the year 2023.  Pluto is in excellent position to be observed this month since it is up from almost the entire night during June.

Pluto and Moon
On June 26th, the Full Moon, during the Lunar Eclipse, will pass within

7°10’ of Pluto.

April 2010

Thursday, April 1st, 2010

Lunar Events

The new moon for April occurs on Wednesday April 14th.  This will make the weekends on April 10-11 and April 17-18 good weekends for dark sky observing.

The full Moon for this month occurs on April 28th and is known as the Full Flower Moon or the Full Corn Planting Moon.

Mercury

Mercury starts this month by crossing from the constellation Pisces (The fish) into the constellation Aries (The Ram).  Mercury will remain in Aries for the duration of the month.

On April 1st, Venus and Mercury will be a mere 3°10’ from each other. Venus and Mercury
Mercury Greatest Eastern Elongation

 

Mercury reaches its best evening observing on April 8, when it reaches its Greatest Eastern Elongation.  On the 8th, Mercury will be 19°20’60” from the Sun.

Note: The Red line is the orbit of Mercury and the green line is the Ecliptic.

Mercury is observable in the evening hours of April until the 21st, when it disappears into the glare of the Sunset.

Venus

Venus is the Evening Star for the month of April. Venus begins the month in the constellation Aries (The Ram) and on April 19th, Mercury crosses into the constellation Taurus (The Bull).

On April 1st, Venus and Mercury will be a mere 3°10’ from each other. Venus and Mercury

Venus and Pleiades
On April 24th, Venus will pass within 3°40’ of the asterism Pleiades (M45).

Mars

Mars is still in excellent position for the evening and late hours of April and is located in the constellation Cancer (The Crab) for the entire month.  Mars sets around 2:45 am (PST) at the start of april and sets around 1:15am (PST) by the end of the month.

Mars and Beehive Cluster
During April, Mars can be found in the general vicinity of the Beehive Cluster (M44).  On April 16th, Mars will pass within 1°10’ of the Beehive Cluster.

Jupiter

Jupiter is observable in the morning hours of April in the constellation Aquarius (The Water Bearer).  Jupiter rises at the start of April around 4:45 am (PST) and by the end of the month is rising around 3:10 am (PST).

Jupiter and Moon
On April 11th, the waning, crescent moon will pass within 4°50’ of the Jupiter.

Saturn

Saturn is located in the constellation Virgo (The Maiden) until December 2012.  Saturn is observable in the evening and very late hours of April. At the start of the month Saturn sets around 5:25 am (PST) and by the end of the month Saturn will set around 3:25 am (PST).

Saturn and Moon On April 25th, Saturn rises within 10° of the waxing, gibbous moon.

Uranus

Uranus emerges from the glare of the sunrise around April 2nd. Uranus is observable in the morning hours before sunrise.  At the beginning of April Uranus rises around 5:10 am (PST) and, by the end of April, Uranus rises around 3:20 am (PST). Uranus is located in the constellation Pisces (The Fish) until May 2012.

Uranus and Moon
On April 12th, the waning, crescent moon passes within 5°15’ of Uranus.

Neptune

Located in the constellation Aquarius (The Water Bearer) until August 2010, Neptune is observable in the early morning hours of April. Neptune rises at the start of the month around 3:50 am (PST) and by the end of the month Neptune rises around 2:00 am (PST).

Neptune and Moon
On April 9th, the waning, crescent moon passes within 3°50’ of Neptune.

Pluto

Pluto is located in the constellation Sagittarius (The Archer) until the year 2023.  Pluto is observable from the very early morning hours of April.  At the start of the month Pluto rises around 12:30 am (PST) and, by the end of the month, Pluto rises around 10:40 pm (PST).

Pluto and Moon
On April 5th, the waning, gibbous moon passes within 5° of Pluto.


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