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Tuesday, August 23, 2016

 

Mars, Antares and Saturn from a Straight Line (Wednesday August 24, 2016)

Mars is almost between the red star Antares and Saturn on the evening of 23 August. Canon IXUS, ASA 400, 15 second exposure, 10x images stacked in Deep Sky Stacker. Click to embiggen.Mars forms a triangle with the red star Antares and Saturn on the evening of 8 August. Canon IXUS, ASA 400, 15 second exposure, 10x images stacked in Deep Sky Stacker. Click to embiggen.

While most of the attention has been on the dance of Venus, Mercury and Jupiter in the twilight, if you have been watching Mars in the evening over the past month, you have seen it enter the head of the Scorpion. forming a triangle with the red star Antares and Saturn, you will have seen the triangle get shorter and shorter. Tomorrow night is the climax of this movement, with Mars being almost directly between Antares (the name means "rival of Mars") and Saturn.

If you have clear skies, pop out any time after 8:00 pm and look to the west. the Scorpion, Antares and the two planets will be very obvious, it should look very lovely.

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