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Tuesday, March 09, 2010


The Sky This Week - Thursday March 11 to Thursday March 18

The New Moon is Tuesday March 16. Mars has faded but is still easily visible. Saturn is now seen in the evening above the eastern horizon near the bight stars Regulus and Spica. Venus appears low in the twilight. The Globe at Night sky survey ends. Jupiter is visible in the morning sky.

Morning sky looking east showing Jupiter and the thin crescent Moon at 6:45 am local daylight saving time (5:45 am non-daylight saving) on Monday March 15. Click to embiggen.

The New Moon is Tuesday March 16.

The Globe at Night sky survey ends this week .

Saturn is visible low in the late evening sky as the bright yellow object between the bright stars Regulus and Spica. Saturn is rising around 8 pm local daylight saving time, and is easily seen in the east in the late evening sky. However, it is best to wait until 11 pm or midnight, when Saturn is quite high in the sky for the best telescopic views. Saturns' rings are opening, and look quite beautiful, even in a small telescope.

Mercury is lost in the twilight.

Bright white Venus continues to rise above from the twilight glow. People with flat, level horizons and good eyesight can see Venus above the western horizon half an hour after Sunset. On the 18th, the thin crescent Moon is near Venus.

Jupiter reappears in the morning twilight, but is difficult to see without a flat, unobstructed horizon. On Monday the 15th Jupiter is seen low in the sky near the thin crescent Moon

Western horizon showing Venus and the Moon at 7:45 pm local daylight saving time (6:45 pm non-daylight saving) on Thursday March 18, click to embiggen.

In the evening Mars can be seen low in the northern sky as the brightest (and clearly red) object in that part of the sky. Now is still a good time to look at our sister world in a telescope. Shortly before 10:00 pm local daylight saving time (9:00 pm non-daylight saving time) Mars is at is highest in the sky, this is the best time to look at Mars in a telescope. Mars is a distinct nearly full disk in a small telescope, although somewhat small. Larger telescopes will be needed to distinguish surface features. Red Mars is in the constellation of Cancer, nearly halfway between Pollux and the Beehive Cluster. Mars is at a standstill for this week.

Printable PDF maps of the Eastern sky at 10 pm ADST, Western sky at 10 pm ADST. 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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