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Wednesday, May 23, 2018

 

The Sky This Week - Thursday May 24 to Thursday May 31

The Full Moon is Wednesday, May 30.  Venus is high in the early evening sky. On May 28 Venus is close to the brightish star Metsuba. Jupiter is past opposition, but is still big and bright in telescopes. The Moon is close to Jupiter on the 27th and 28th. At this time Jupiter is close to the bright star alpha Librae. Venus is setting as Jupiter is rising. Mars and Saturn are visible in the late evening skies. Saturn is close to the globular cluster M22. The Moon is close to Saturn on May 31. Asteroid Vesta passes  M24. Mercury is low in the morning skies.

The Full Moon is Wednesday, May 30. 


Evening twilight sky on Saturday May 26 looking west as seen from Adelaide at 18:13 ACST (60 minutes after sunset). Venus is close to the brightish star Metsuba. The inset shows a simulated telescopic view of Venus.

 Similar views will be seen throughout Australia at the equivalent local time (60 minutes after sunset, click to embiggen).

Venus is now high in the late twilight. Venus is visible to the unaided eye from sunset, easy to see 30-60 minutes after sunset and can viewed  up to 90 minutes after sunset.

Evening sky on Sunday May 27 looking east  as seen from Adelaide at 23:00 ACST. Jupiter is  high above the horizon, Saturn and Mars are clearly visible. the Asteroid Vesta is visible in binoculars near Saturn

The inset to the left  is a simulated telescopic view of Jupiter and its moons at 23:45 ACST, on the 26th with Io passing across the face of Jupiter. The inset to the right is a simulated telescopic view of Saturn and the globular cluster M22.

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

Binocular view of the region near Saturn showing the open cluster M24 and Vesta on Sunday May 27 looking east  as seen from Adelaide at 23:00 ACST. Similar views will be seen throughout Australia at the equivalent local time (click to embiggen).


Vesta is now bright enough to be easily seen in binoculars. It is travelling through the northern edge of the open cluster M24. It is brighter than most of the stars in the cluster, but you may need to watch over several nights to watch it move.

Morning sky on Saturday May 26 looking east as seen from Adelaide at 6:44 ACST (30 minutes before sunrise). Mercury is the brightest object closest to the eastern horizon.

 Similar views will be seen throughout Australia at the equivalent local time (30 minutes before sunrise).



 Venus  is now sufficiently high in the evening twilight to be readily visible above the horizon. It is nearly two hand-spans above the horizon 60 minutes after sunset. It is bright enough to be visible just after sunset and easy to see up to 60 minutes after sunset. Venus can be viewed for at least 90 minutes after sunset if you have a flat, unobstructed horizon.

Venus s close to the brightish star Metsuba on May 28.

Mercury is rapidly heading towards the horizon. This is the last week that it is readily observable in the morning sky and is the brightest object above the eastern horizon.

Jupiter  is rising in the early evening as Venus is setting. It was at Opposition on the 9th, and is still visible all night long. It is  a good telescopic object in the late evening. There are some good Jovian Moon events this week. Over the week Jupiter comes closer to the bright star alpha Librae (Zubenelgenubi) and is close on the 27th and 28th, when the waxing Moon visits Jupiter.

 Mars is in Sagittarius the archer and is now rising in the late evening. Mars is moving away from Saturn although the pair are still obvious.  Mars is brightening ahead of opposition later this year.

Saturn is climbing higher the evening sky, although telescopically it is still best in the morning sky. It is within binocular range of several attractive clusters and nebula. It is close to the bright globular cluster M22 and the pair are visible in binoculars and wide field telescope eyepieces. Saturn is close to the Moon on May 31.

The asteroid Vesta is now bright enough to be easily seen in binoculars. It is travelling along the northern edge of the open cluster M24. It is brighter than most of the stars in the cluster, but you may need to watch over several nights to watch it move and be sure of its identity. Printable spotters chars are here.

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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