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Tuesday, January 02, 2018

 

The Sky This Week - Thursday January 4 to Thursday January 11

The Last Quarter Moon is  Tuesday, January 9. The variable star Mira is now bright enough to see easily. Mars is easy to see and is heading towards bright Jupiter. The pair are spectacularly close on January 7 and visible together in telescopes. On January 11 the waning Moon forms a line with the pair. Mercury climbs higher in the morning sky followed by Saturn.

The Last Quarter Moon is  Tuesday, January 9.

Morning sky on Sunday January 7 looking east as seen from Adelaide at 5:05 ACDST (60 minutes before sunrise). Jupiter and Mars are spectacularly close together.

The inset shows a simulation of the field of view of  a 12 mm eyepiece on a 114mm Newtonian telescope. Mercury is now visible low to the horizon.

Similar views will be seen throughout Australia at the equivalent local time (that is 60 minutes before sunrise, click to embiggen).

Morning sky on Thursday January 11 looking east as seen from Adelaide at 5:08 ACDST (60 minutes before sunrise). Jupiter is close to Mars with the waning Moon nearby. Mercury is more prominent and Saturn is rising to meet it.

Similar views will be seen throughout Australia at the equivalent local time (that is 60 minutes before sunrise, click to embiggen).

Venus  is lost in the twilight.

Jupiter climbs higher in the morning sky and is now quite prominent. It is moving away from  the bright double star alpha2 Librae (Zubenelgenubi). The pair and Mars are visible together in binoculars at the start of the week, as well at the start of the the week Mars and Jupiter can be seen together in low power telescope eyepieces.

On January 7 Mars and Jupiter are spectacularly close, being 0.25 degrees apart (around a quarter of a finger width). At this time the pair are visible together in high power telescope eye pieces.

 Mars is close to the bright double star alpha2 Librae (Zubenelgenubi) and moving towards Jupiter. At the beginning of the week the trio are visible together in binoculars. At this time Spica, Mars, alpha2 Librae (Zubenelgenubi) and Jupiter form a line in the morning sky. On the 4th Mars and Zubenelgenubi are visible together in low power telescope eyepieces. Mars than leaves Zubenelgenubi behind and closes in on Jupiter, on the 5th Mars and Jupiter are visible together in low power telescope eye pieces. The pair come closer and are visible together in high power telescope eye pieces on the 7th. They then draw apart and are visible in medium power telescope eyepieces on the 8th.

Mercury is now rising rapidly into the morning skies, and will be highest on the 2nd, it then drops back towards the horizon and a close encounter with Saturn in  the twilight.


Saturn climbs out of  the twilight, climbing towards Mercury. The pair will meet next week.

Evening sky on Saturday January 6 looking north-west as seen from Adelaide at 22:19 ACDST (90 minutes after sunset). (click to embiggen)

The long period variable star Mira is now near peak brightness, and is easily visible to the unaided eye, even in Moonlight.  The circle marks the location of Mira in the rambling constellation of Cetus. The Arrow shaped head of  Taurus the bull points almost directly at Mira. This is a good time to see this iconic variable star

 Similar views will be seen elsewhere in Australia at the equivalent local time (90 minutes after sunset). (click to embiggen).

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

Here is the near-real time satellite view of the clouds (day and night) http://satview.bom.gov.au/

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Comments:
thank you very much, your article is very nice.
RC airplane

 
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