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Tuesday, September 08, 2015

 

The Sky This Week - Thursday September 10 to Thursday September 17

The New Moon is Sunday September 13. Mercury lowers in the evening twilight and is close to the crescent Moon on the 15th. Saturn is near the head of the Scorpion. Comet C/2013 US10 may be visible in binoculars. Mars is visible low in the morning twilight. Venus climbs higher in the morning twilight. The crescent Moon is close to Venus and Mars on the 11th.

The New Moon is Sunday September 13. The Moon is at apogee, when it is furthest from the Earth, on the 14th.

Early evening sky on Tuesday September 15 looking north-west as seen from Adelaide at 19:00 ACST showing Mercury and the crescent Moon.

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

Mercury starts lowering in the evening sky, but is still readily visible in the late twilight as the brightest object above the western horizon. It is close to the crescent Moon on the 15th.
  
Jupiter  is lost in the twilight.


Evening sky on Saturday September 12 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. Comet C/2013 US10 is visible in telescopes (and possibly binoculars) not far from the pointers. 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.





Comet C/2013 US10 is not far from the Pointers and is brightening, and may be visible in binoculars by the end of the week. A black and white spotters map is here.

Early morning sky on Friday September 11 looking east as seen from Adelaide at 5:30 ACST showing Mars and Venus just above the horizon, with the crescent Moon forming a triangle with Mars and Venus.  The inset shows the telescopic view of Venus at this time. Similar views will be seen elsewhere in Australia at the equivalent local time. (click to embiggen).

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

Venus climbs higher in the morning twilight and is now reasonably easy to see. It is a  distinct crescent and impressive in a small telescope. Venus is near the crescent Moon on the 11th forming a triangle with Mars.

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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Comments:
Hi Ian

Am new to astronomy and came across your blog. Thanks for presenting everything so clearly - valuable for a beginner.
 
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