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Saturday, July 28, 2012


Occultation of Omicron Scorpii by the Moon July 28, 2012

The evening sky facing East in Adelaide on July 28 at 9:22 pm AEST showing the waning Moon having just about to cover Omicron Scorpii (indicated by circle). (similar views will be seen from other cities at a similar local time eg 10:08 pm AEDST Melbourne.
The nearly full Moon passes in front of the moderately bright stars Omicron Scorpii 1 and 2 (magnitudes 3.9 and 4.2) in the head of the Scorpion on the evening of Saturday July 28.

This event is visible from all of Australia, although both stars are covered only in some states. (Map and full timings for more cities in UT here).

The Moon rises in the head of the Scorpion near Omicron Scorpii 1 and 2. The dark limb of the Moon covers the stars at 21:24 pm ACST Adelaide (Omicron Scorpii 1 only), 22:22 AEST Brisbane (Omicron Scorpii 1), 22:14 AEST Canberra (Omicron Scorpii 1 only), 21:36 pm ACST Darwin (Omicron Scorpii 2, Omicron Scorpii 1 graze), 22:19 pm AEST Hobart (Omicron Scorpii 1 only), 22:08 pm AEST Melbourne (Omicron Scorpii 1), 19:03 AWST Perth (Omicron Scorpii 1) and 22:18 pm AEST Sydney (Omicron Scorpii 1 only).

The bright limb of the Moon uncovers the stars at 22:38 pm ACDST Adelaide (Omicron Scorpii 1 only), 23:34 AEST Brisbane, 23:19 AEST Canberra (Omicron Scorpii 1), 22:55 pm ACST Darwin (Omicron Scorpii 2), 22:57 pm AEST Hobart (Omicron Scorpii 1 only), 23:10 pm AEST Melbourne (Omicron Scorpii 1 only), 20:27 AWST Perth (Omicron Scorpii 1) and 23:23 pm AEST Sydney (Omicron Scorpii 1 only).

With the Moon two days past first Quarter, this event is really best seen with binoculars or a small telescope (especially for the reappearance of the stars against the bright edge of the Moon). If you have a tripod or other stand for your binoculars, it will be much easier to observe. With the Moon in the head of the Scorpion it will look rather attractive.

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