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Friday, September 05, 2008


Occultation of 2 Scorpii, Saturday 6 September

The constellation Scorpius, as seen from Adelaide at 9:oo pm local time on Saturday 6 September 2008, just before the Moon covers 2 Scorpii (click to enlarge).

In the early evening of Saturday September 6 the dark side of the Moon passes over the star 2 Scorpii (around 9:45 pm in eastern states, 9:00 pm central states, 7:00 pm WA, in Darwin the Moon passes over similarly bright 1 Scorpii instead at 7:35 pm). A more detailed timetable is here.

This event can be easily seen in binoculars, and the early evening time makes it accessible to most people. Seeing the occultation with the unaided eye may be a bit of a stretch under suburban skies. The Moon also passes over the dimmer 3 Scorpii shortly after 2 Scorpii. This is definitely a binocular or small telescope sight.

Whether you observe by eye, binoculars or telescope, the sight of the waxing Moon in the head of the constellation Scorpius will be rather beautiful. Keep an eye out for the International Space Station as well.

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