09/19/2018 – Ephemeris – Wednesday is bright planet day on Ephemeris

September 19, 2018 Leave a comment

Ephemeris for Talk Like a Pirate Day, Wednesday, September 19th. The Sun will rise at 7:26. It’ll be up for 12 hours and 19 minutes, setting at 7:45. The Moon, 3 days past first quarter, will set at 2:47 tomorrow morning.

Let’s look at the bright planets for this week. Four of them are visible in the evening sky. The brilliant Venus will be visible in the western twilight from about 8 p.m. until it sets at 8:40 p.m. Jupiter will be in the southwest as it gets dark. It is only outshone by Venus, and the Moon. The big planet will set at 9:40 p.m. Saturn will start the evening low in the southern sky and will stay relatively low, above the Teapot of Sagittarius. It will be due south at 7:59 p.m. and will set at 12:24 a.m. Mars will be low in the south-southeast as the skies darken tonight. and is now 49.5 million miles (79.7 million km) away. Mars will be due south at 10:09 p.m., and it will set at 2:27 a.m.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Evening planets
The evening planets at 8:15 p.m. September 19, 2018. Click on image to enlarge. Created using Stellarium.
Binocular Moon
The gibbous Moon as it should appear tonight in binoculars. Created using Stellarium.
Telescopic planets
Venus, Jupiter, Saturn and Mars with the same magnification at 8:30 p.m. September 19, 2018. Yes, your eyes don’t deceive you, Venus is larger than Jupiter. Venus is 39.0 ” (seconds of arc) in diameter, while Jupiter is 33.3″. Venus is approaching us, while Jupiter is being left behind by the Earth. Mars is also shown enlarged. The global dust storm is abating, so the albedo features are visible to be seen. Created using Cartes du Ciel (Sky Charts).
Planets and the Moon on a single night
Planets and the Moon at sunset and sunrise of a single night starting with sunset on the right on September 19, 2018. The night ends on the left with sunrise on the 20th. Click on the image to enlarge. Created using my LookingUp program.
Advertisements

09/18/2018 – Ephemeris – Moon and planet party tomorrow night

September 18, 2018 Leave a comment

Ephemeris for Tuesday, September 18th. The Sun will rise at 7:25. It’ll be up for 12 hours and 22 minutes, setting at 7:47. The Moon, 2 days past first quarter, will set at 1:53 tomorrow morning.

Tomorrow evening the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society will set up their telescopes at the Traverse Area District Library Central Library on Woodmere Avenue from 7 to 8:30 p.m. weather permitting for a star party, though it won’t actually feature stars. It will feature the Moon in its gibbous phase and the planets Jupiter, Saturn and Mars after 7:30 p.m. The evening will start with a twilight talk by yours truly about the Moon. Also Mars is showing some features now that it is still relatively close to the Earth at 49 and a half million miles away, and the global dust storm on the planet has subsided. On the face of Mars tomorrow night is the large formation Syrtis Major, sounds nice, but it means the Great Swamp.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

09/17/2018 – Ephemeris – The Moon Tonight and the Jade Rabbit

September 17, 2018 Leave a comment

Ephemeris for Monday, September 17th. The Sun will rise at 7:24. It’ll be up for 12 hours and 25 minutes, setting at 7:49. The Moon, 1 day past first quarter, will set at 1:03 tomorrow morning.

Now is a good time to point that small telescope or binoculars toward the Moon. The gray seas on the right side of the moon depict the neck, head and ears of the Jade Rabbit. It’s curled up body is on the night side of the Moon to the left. The rabbit is upside down as we see him with the naked eye or binoculars. The Sea of Serenity is the upper part of his body, the head is the Sea of Tranquility. A bay south of Tranquility and the Sea of Nectar is one ear and the Sea of Fertility is the other ear. The Jade Rabbit is related to the Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival which occurs at our Harvest Moon. It’s on September 24th this year. Another amateur astronomer and myself brought telescopes to the local festival last year to view the Jade Rabbit on the Moon.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

The Moon tonight
The Moon tonight, September 17, 208 at 9 p.m., with the head of the Jade Rabbit. Created using Virtual Moon Atlas
The Jade Rabbit
The Jade Rabbit on the Moon. The more complete title is Jade Rabbit pounding medicine (in the mortar at his feet.  From Wikipedia source is Zeimus.

09/14/2018 – Ephemeris – Local astronomy activities Saturday the 15th

September 14, 2018 Leave a comment

Note:  I’m a bit late with this post due to unscheduled star party last night for Greenspire School at Leelanau Outdoor Center near Pyramid Point.  Then I had a sail this morning for Inland Seas.  I came home absolutely pooped out.  Anyway the events described except for the first paragraph below are for tomorrow.

Ephemeris for Friday, September 14th. The Sun will rise at 7:20. It’ll be up for 12 hours and 34 minutes, setting at 7:55. The Moon, 2 days before first quarter, will set at 11:00 this evening.

There are two local astronomical events tomorrow. The Leland Heritage Celebration will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Fishtown in Leland. The Grand Traverse Astronomical Society will be there to show the Sun through member’s telescopes, maybe spot the Moon and the planet Venus plus give out NASA items for the kids. We’ll exhibit pictures gained from last year’s total solar eclipse. Then starting at 9 p.m. the crew will be at Northwestern Michigan College’s Rogers Observatory for a star party, viewing Mars, Saturn, Jupiter and the Moon, plus some brighter objects beyond the solar system. Rain will affect the Leland event. The observatory is located on south of Traverse City on Birmley Road between Keystone and Garfield roads.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Don Flegel at Fishtown
Don Flegel, in the foreground, with the society’s solar telescope assisting a person viewing the Sun at he Leland Heritage Festival 2017 at Fishtown. Don Flegel, in the foreground, with the society’s solar telescope assisting a person viewing the Sun at he Leland Heritage Festival 2017 at Fishtown. Man in the background in the blue cap is Gary Carlisle. Telescope in the middle is mine.

09/13/2018 – Ephemeris – The Man in the Moon’s eye

September 13, 2018 Comments off

Ephemeris for Thursday, September 13th. The Sun will rise at 7:19. It’ll be up for 12 hours and 37 minutes, setting at 7:57. The Moon, 3 days before first quarter, will set at 10:27 this evening.

The Moon tonight is a 4 day old moon, and appears near the planet Jupiter. Day one is its first appearance in the evening after disappearing from the morning sky. The ancients called it the new moon, but astronomers treat the conjunction of the Moon and the Sun as the new moon. In this program I note the days before or after the nearest quarter phase, as a better representation of the actual appearance of the Moon’s phase. The Moon will be a beautiful crescent tonight. Binoculars will reveal a dark area just above the fattest part of the crescent. It serves as one of the Man in the Moon’s eyes. Its official name is Mare Crisium, or Sea of Crises. Most of the Moon’s seas are connected, or appear to be. This one is definitely not.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

The 4 day old Moon

The 4 day old Moon showing Mare Crisium, the Sea of Crises. 9 p.m. September 13, 2018. Created using Virtual Moon Atlas.

Categories: Phases, The Moon Tags:

09/12/2018 – Ephemeris – Wednesday is bright planet day on Ephemeris

September 12, 2018 Comments off

Ephemeris for Wednesday, September 12th. The Sun will rise at 7:18. It’ll be up for 12 hours and 40 minutes, setting at 7:59. The Moon, 3 days past new, will set at 9:56 this evening.

It’s Wednesday again and time to look at the bright planets. Four of them are visible in the evening sky. The brilliant Venus will be visible in the western twilight from about 8:20 p.m. until it sets at 9:03 p.m. Jupiter will be in the southwest as it gets dark. It is only outshone by Venus, and the Moon, and is again brighter than Mars. Jupiter will set at 10:16 p.m. Saturn will start the evening low in the southern sky and will stay relatively low, above the Teapot of Sagittarius. It will be due south at 8:28 p.m. and will set at 12:51 a.m. Mars will be low in the south-southeast as the skies darken tonight. and is now 46.4 million miles (74.6 million km) away. Mars will be due south at 10:29 p.m., and it will set at 2:43 a.m.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Evening planets

The evening planets at 8:30 p.m. September 12, 2018. Click on image to enlarge. Created using Stellarium.

Binocular Moon

The crescent Moon as it should appear tonight in binoculars. Created using Stellarium.

Telescopic Planets

Venus, Jupiter, Saturn and Mars with the same magnification at 8:30 p.m. September 12, 2018. Yes, your eyes don’t deceive you, Venus is larger than Jupiter. Venus is 34.9 ” (seconds of arc) in diameter, while Jupiter is 33.8″. Venus is approaching us, while Jupiter is being left behind by the Earth. Mars is also shown enlarged. The global dust storm is abating, so the albedo features are beginning to be seen. Created using Cartes du Ciel (Sky Charts).

Planets and the Moon on a single night

Planets and the Moon at sunset and sunrise of a single night starting with sunset on the right on September 12, 2018. The night ends on the left with sunrise on the 13th. Click on the image to enlarge. Created using my LookingUp program.

09/11/2018 – Ephemeris – Earth shine on the Moon

September 11, 2018 Comments off

Ephemeris for Tuesday, September 11th. The Sun will rise at 7:16. It’ll be up for 12 hours and 43 minutes, setting at 8:00. The Moon, 2 days past new, will set at 9:27 this evening.

At around 8:30 this evening Venus will be in the southwest only 9 degrees above the horizon, about the width of a fist held at arm’s length. While viewing Venus the Moon will be to the right and above our evening star. It will be a thin sliver of a crescent and in the twilight there will be the suggestion that there is more than the thin sliver of the Moon visible. Binoculars will confirm that the entire disk of the Moon will be visible. The effect is called earth shine. The nearly full Earth is illuminating the Moon to a much greater degree than the full Moon illuminates the Earth. The Earth is about 4 times the Moons diameter and its surface is about twice as bright and the Moon’s. The ancients called it: “The old Moon in the new Moon’s arms.”

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Venus, Moon and Jupiter

Venus, the Moon and Jupiter at 8:30 p.m. September 11, 2018. Created using Stellarium.

The Moon with Earth shine

An overly colored Moon to bring out Earth shine on thye evening of September 11, 2018. Created by Stellarium. Overly processed in GIMP.