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Tuesday, August 25, 2015

 

The Sky This Week - Thursday August 27 to Thursday September 3

The Full Moon is Sunday August 30. Jupiter is lost in the twilight. Mercury rises higher in the evening twilight. Saturn is near the head of the Scorpion. Mars is visible low in the morning twilight. Venus climbs higher in the morning twilight.

The Full Moon is Sunday August 30. The Moon is at perigee, when it is closest to Earth, on the 31st.

Early evening sky on Saturday August 29 looking north-west as seen from Adelaide at 18:30 ACST showing Mercury.

Similar views will be seen elsewhere in Australia at the equivalent local time. (click to embiggen).

Mercury climbs higher into the evening sky, becoming readily visible. The next few weeks will be the best time to watch this fleeting world as it rises into darker skies.
  
Jupiter  is lost in the twilight.

Evening sky on Saturday August 29 looking west as seen from Adelaide at 22:00 ACST.  Saturn is  easily visible high above the western horizon  near the head of the Scorpion. The inset shows the telescopic view of Saturn at this time. Similar views will be seen elsewhere in Australia at the equivalent local time. (click to embiggen).

Saturn is easily visible from twilight near the head of the constellation of the Scorpion not far from the bright red star Antares. The sight of the distinctive constellation of the Scorpion rising up to the zenith, with bright Saturn close to its head, is very nice indeed.

While Saturn is  readily visible from the end of twilight, it is best for telescope observation from around 19:00 until shortly after midnight. By 22:00 Saturn is above the western horizon. This is also a good time to scan Scorpius and Sagittarius with binoculars to reveal the clusters in and around the Scorpions tail.

Early morning sky on Saturday August 29 looking east as seen from Adelaide at 6:30 ACST showing Mars and Venus just above the horizon.  Similar views will be seen elsewhere in Australia at the equivalent local time. (click to embiggen). 

Mars  is low the morning skies this week.  While it is climbing out of the twilight it still requires binoculars and a flat unobstructed horizon to see effectively.

Venus climbs higher in the morning twilight. It is a  thin crescent and impressive in a small telescope.You will need an unobstructed horizon to see it before the approaching dawn swallows it up.

There are lots of interesting things in the sky to view with a telescope. Especially with Mercury and Saturn in the sky. If you don't have a telescope, now is a good time to visit one of your local astronomical societies open nights or the local planetariums.

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