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Tuesday, October 06, 2009

 

The Sky This Week - Thursday October 8 to Thursday October 15

The Last Quarter Moon is Sunday October 11. Jupiter is is easily seen as the brightest object in the evening sky. In the morning, Venus and Mars are seen above the eastern horizon before dawn and are joined by Saturn and Mercury. Saturn and Mercury are close on Friday October 9,

Morning sky looking east showing Venus, Mercury and Saturn at 6:30 am local daylight saving time (5:30 am non-daylight saving) on Friday October 9. Click to embiggen.

The Last Quarter Moon is Sunday October 11.

Mercury is low in the morning twilight glow. On Friday October 9 Mercury and Saturn are close together just above the horizon (see below).

Saturn is low in the morning sky this week, and a challenging object in the twilight.

Jupiter is easily seen as the brightest object in the evening sky. Jupiter is big enough to be appreciated in even the smallest telescope. If you don't have a telescope to view Jupiter, why not go to one of your local Astronomical Societies or Planetariums open nights? Jupiter's Moons are readily visible in binoculars or a small telescope.

North-eastern horizon with Mars near the Moon at 6:00 am local daylight saving time (5:00 am non-daylight saving) on Monday morning October 12, click to embiggen.

In the morning, Venus and Mars are visible in the eastern sky. Red Mars is in the constellation of Gemini and forms a line with the bright stars Castor and Pollux. On Monday October 12 Mars is close to the waning Moon.

Bright white Venus is close to the horizon, but is still readily visible in the dawn twilight if you have a clear, unobstructed horizon. Friday morning October 9 Venus is close to Mercury and Saturn. This is will require a clear, level horizon to see, and probably binoculars to see faint Mercury and Saturn in the twilight. During the week Venus comes even closer to the horizon.

Printable PDF maps of the Eastern sky at 10 pm, Western sky at 10 pm. For further details and more information on what's up in the sky, see Southern Skywatch. Cloud cover predictions can be found at SkippySky.

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