Posts Tagged ‘Pleiades’

March 2010

Monday, March 1st, 2010

Vernal Equinox

Spring begins on March 20th when the Spring Equinox occurs. The Spring Equinox occurs when the tilt of the Earth is in tangent with the orbit of Earth around the Sun.  This point marks the beginning of Spring.  An Equinox has an equal amount of daylight and nighttime.

Lunar Events

The New Moon for March occurs on Monday, March 15th; this will make the weekend of March 13-14 as the best weekend for dark sky observing.

The Full Moon for March occurs on March 29th and is known as the “Full Pink Moon” or the “Pascal Moon.”

Moon and Pleiades

On March 20th, on the Spring Equinox, the waxing crescent Moon is passing through the asterism Pleiades (M45).

Moon Beehive Cluster M44

On March 25th, the waxing, gibbous Moon passes within 3°30’ of the

Beehive Cluster (M44).

Moon and Spica

March 30th finds the waning, gibbous Moon passing within 3°

of the star Spica.

Mercury

Mercury is observable in the evening hours, after March 26th as it emerges from the glare of the sunset.

Mercury and Venus

On March 31st, Mercury and Venus will be about 3°25’ of each other.

Unseen due to the position relative to the Sun, Mercury begins the month in the constellation Aquarius (The Water bearer) and on March 14th, passes into the constellation Pisces (The Fish). On March 20th, Mercury brief crosses into the constellation Cetus (The Sea Monster), and 13.5 hours later, returns to constellation Pisces where it finishes out the month.

Venus

Venus is observable all month in the evening hours of March.  Venus begins this month in the constellation Aquarius (The Water Bearer) and on March 3rd crosses into the constellation Pisces (The Fish).  Starting March 12 Venus starts to cross the corner of the constellation Cetus (The Sea Monster) and returns to Pisces 50 hours later on March 14th. Finally, Venus moves into the constellation Aries (The Ram) on March 30th.

Venus and Uranus

On March 3rd, Venus passes less than 1° of Uranus.

Moon and Venus

On March 16th, Venus sets within 6°20’ of the waxing, crescent moon.

Mars

Mars is located in the constellation Cancer (The Crab) all month and is visible from evening to early morning hour throughout March.  Mars is in excellent position for observation due to it reaching Opposition on January 29th.  Mars sets around 4:40 am (PST) at the start of the month and by the end of the month is setting around 3:40 am (PDT)

Moon and  Mars

On March 25, Mars sets less than 5°20’ of the waxing, gibbous moon.

Jupiter

Jupiter is located in the constellation Aquarius (The Water Bearer) all month. However Jupiter is not observable until around March 20th when it emerges from the glare of the morning Sunrise; rising around 5:00am (PST).

Saturn

This month Saturn will be in the absolute best position for observation as it reaches opposition on March 21, 2010.  Saturn is opposite to the sun relative to our position on Earth, so, Saturn will be up all night, rising as the Sun sets and setting when the Sun Rises.

Saturn is located in the constellation Virgo (The Maiden) until December, 2012.

Saturn and Moon

On March 1st, Saturn rises 7°35’ of the waning, gibbous Moon.

Saturn and Moon

On March 29th, Saturn rises within 8°15’ of the waxing, gibbous Moon.

Uranus

The Planet Uranus is located in  the constellation Pisces (The Fish) until May of 2012.  Due to its position relative to the Sun, Uranus will on be observable this month.

Neptune

Neptune can be observed this month just before sunrise.  It rises around 5:50 am (PST) at the start of the month and by the end of March, is rising around 4:55 am (PDT). On March 23rd, Neptune crosses from the constellation Capricornus (The Sea Goat) to the constellation Aquarius (The Water Bearer) where it will remain until August.

Moon and Nptune

On March 13th, Neptune rises within 3° of the waning, crescent moon.

Pluto

Pluto is observable during most of  the morning hours of March.  Pluto rises around 2:30 am (PST) at the start of March and around 1:30 am (PDT), by the end of March.  The planet Pluto is located in the constellation Sagittarius (The Archer) until the year 2023.

Moon and Pluto

On March 9th, Pluto rises within 8° of the waning, crescent moon.

July 2009

Wednesday, July 1st, 2009

Lunar Events

The Full Moon for July occurs on July 7th, and is known as the Full Buck Moon or Thunder Moon.  Also, since it is the closest Full Moon to the Summer Solstice, it can be known as the Honey Moon.




July 7 1:40am-3:30am (PDT) - Movie shows the slight penumbral Lunar Eclipse as viewed from Los Angeles. Each frame is one minute.

In the very early morning hours of July 7th a very slight Penumbral Lunar Eclipse will be visible from the Pacific rim, including western South America, the West Coast of Mexico and South Western United States, Hawaii, New Zealand, eastern Australia and the Pacific side of Antartica.




July 7 1:40am-3:30am (PDT) - Movie shows Earth and Sun as viewed from Moon during the slight penumbral Lunar Eclipse. Each frame is one minute.

The New Moon for July is Tuesday, July 21st.  This will make the weekend of July 18-19th as the best weekend for dark sky observing.

Celestial Events

Earth reaches its Aphelion on July 4, 2009

Aphelion The Aphelion is the point in Earth’s elliptical orbit that it is furthest from the Sun.  This is the opposite point to the Perihelion when the Earth is at its closest point to the Sun, which occurs in January.

Total Solar Eclipse

Depending on the location on Earth, there is a Total Solar Eclipse on July 21st or 22nd. Visible from Eastern China, Japan and the South Western Pacific, the eclipse crosses the International Date Line.




Movie shows the Total SolarEclipse as viewed from the Moon. Each frame is one minute. The Shadow of the moon Crosses Eastern China, Japan, and the South West Pacific.




Movie shows the Total SolarEclipse as viewed from Japan. Each frame is one minute.

Mercury

Mercury is visible the first few days of July in the morning hours.  By July 4th, Mercury disappears into the glare of the sunrise and reappears on the evening side of the Sun around July 24th.  After July 24th Mercury continues to move in better position for viewing until August 24th when Mercury reaches its Greatest Eastern Elongation.

July 1st Sunrise - Mercury’s position in the morning at the beginning of the month. Mercury disappears into the glare of the Sun around July 4th. July 1 - Mercury

Mercury begins the month in the constellation Taurus (The Bull), and on July 3rd, crosses into the constellation Gemini (The Twins). Then behind the glare of the Sun, Mercury crosses Gemini until July 16th when it moves into Cancer (The Crab), and after Mercury re-emerges in the evening, it moves finally into the constellation Leo (The Lion) on July 26, where it will spend the rest of July.

July 31 - Mercury
July 31 Sunset - By the end of the month, Mercury is visible in the
evening. Mercury re-emerges from the glare of the Sun around July 24th.

Venus

Venus is visible as the Morning Star for the entire month of July.  Venus begins this month in the constellation Taurus (The Bull) until the end of the month.  On July 29 Venus crosses into the constellation Orion (The Hunter)  where it will stay until the last few minutes of July and it crosses into the constellation Gemini (The Twins).

July 4 - Venus and M45
On July 4th Venus will pass within 7° of the asterism Pleiades (M45).

July 18 - Venus, Mars, M45, Moon
On July 18th Venus, Mars, the asterism Pleiades (M45) and the waning, crescent Moon are group together within 16° of each other.

July 19 - Venus and Moon
On July 19th Venus rises within 6°45′ of the waning, crescent Moon.

Mars

Mars can be observed in the morning hours above Venus in July.  At the beginning of the month Mars is only about 4° above Venus and as the month progresses Venus continues to move further away until the end of the month they are about 16° apart.

Mars starts the month in the constellation Aries (The Ram) and on July 2nd moves into the constellation Taurus (The Bull) where it will spend the rest of July.

Mars rises around 2:45 am (PDT) at the first of the Month and by the end of July Mars rises at 2:00am.

On July 12th, Mars passes within 4°45′ of the asterism Pleiades (M45). July 12 - Mars and M45

July 18 - Mars and Moon
On July 18th, the waning, crescent Moon will pass within 5° of Mars.

Jupiter

The planet Jupiter is found in the constellation Capricornus (The Sea Goat until January 2010.  Moving in retrograde motion this month, Jupiter is observable from the late evening hours until sunrise.

At the beginning of July, Jupiter rises around 10:46 pm (PDT) and at the end of the month Jupiter is rising around 8:40 pm (PDT).

July 10 - Jupiter and Neptune
On July 10th, Jupiter passes within 0°30’ of the planet Neptune and
about 6°15′ of the waning, gibbous Moon.

Saturn

The planet Saturn is visible in the evening all month.  At the beginning of July Saturn sets around 11:45 pm (PDT) and by the end of the month Saturn sets around 9:15 pm (PDT).  Saturn is located in the constellation Leo (The Lion) until September.

July 24 - Saturn and Moon
On July 24th, the waxing, crescent Moon sets about 8° below Saturn.

Uranus

The planet Uranus is found in the constellation Pisces (The Fish) until October. At the start of July Uranus rises around midnight and by the end of the month Uranus rises around 10:00 pm (PDT).

July 12 - Uranus and Moon On July 12th, Uranus rises within 4°30′ of the waning, gibbous Moon.

Neptune

Neptune is located in the constellation Capricornus (The Sea Goat) until the year 2010. For the entire month of July, Neptune rises within a few minutes of Jupiter. At the beginning of the month Neptune rises around 10:45 pm (PDT) and by the end of July Neptune rises around 8:45 pm (PDT).  Neptune is currently moving in retrograde motion.

July 10 - Jupiter and Neptune
On July 10th, Jupiter passes within 0°30′ of the planet Neptune and
about 6°15′ of the waning, gibbous Moon.

Pluto

Pluto is found in the constellation Sagittarius (The Archer) until the year 2023.  Moving in retrograde motion this month, Pluto sets around 5:25 am (PDT) at the beginning of July, and by the end of the month, Pluto sets around 3:20 am (PDT).

July 15 - Pluto
July 15 evening - Relative position, in the South East, of Pluto for
the month of July.


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