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Friday, May 24, 2019

 

Opposition of Ceres, 29 May 2019


Sky at 22:00 ACST on Saturday, May 25  looking east as seen from Adelaide. Similar views will be seen esewhere in Australia at and equivalent local time (click to embiggen). Ceres is below Antares and bright enough to be easily seen in binoculars. Jupiter is high above the eastern horizon with Saturn below. The left upper insert inset shows the telescopic view of Jupiter at this time, the left lower insert that of Saturn. Black and white binocular chart suitable for printing (click to embiggen and print).

The large circle represents the field of view of 10x50 binoculars. The small that of a 4" Newtonian telescope with a 24 mm eyepiece. Use the horizon charts for orientation first.

Ceres is at Opposition on the 29th of May. Currently around magnitude 7, it is readily visible in binoculars. Ceres is relatively easy to find, below below and to the north of Antares and above Jupiter. Ceres can be seen to move from night to night, brightening gradually.

Ceres is easy to spot with a bit of start hopping. Over the next few days it is between Chi (ꭕ) and Phi (ᶲ) Ophiuchi. While close to Antares, it is better to locate Acrab (ß1 Scorpii) the second brightest star just up from Antares, which forms a distinctive triangle with the close pair Omega (⍵) Scorpii and Jabbah (𝜈 Scorpii).

If you fool the line formed by Acab and Jabbah, the next bright star you come to is Chi (ꭕ) Ophiuchi, with Phi (ᶲ) Ophiuchi below that. Ceres is brightest object between the pair, and can be seen to move over the coming days.

Sky at 22:00 ACST on Saturday, May 25  looking east as seen from Adelaide. This is a higer magnification spotters map to find the dwarf planet Ceres.Sky at 22:00 ACST on Saturday, May 29  looking east as seen from Adelaide. This is a higer magnification spotters map to find the dwarf planet Ceres.

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