Archive for August 5, 2015

08/05/2015 – Ephemeris – Down to one easily visible evening planet

August 5, 2015 Comments off

Ephemeris for Wednesday, August 5th.  The Sun rises at 6:33.  It’ll be up for 14 hours and 30 minutes, setting at 9:03.   The Moon, 1 day before last quarter, will rise at 12:08 tomorrow morning.

Lets take a look at the bright planets for this week.  Our evening stars Venus and Jupiter leaving the evening sky in the west.  Venus will set 2 minutes after the Sun, so the only hope to spot it is before sunset, a dangerous prospect with the Sun so close.  Jupiter is just too faint in the twilight to pick up.  Venus is 10 days from inferior conjunction with the Sun.  Saturn is in the south in the evening twilight.  Saturn can be spotted just to the right of the constellation of Scorpius the scorpion and its bright red star Antares below and right of it.  Even small telescopes can see Saturn’s rings.  A spotting scope of 20 power magnification can show that Saturn has a ring.  Antares though is star-like, scintillating like a sparkler.

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


Planets in the West

Venus, Jupiter, and Mercury plus the star Regulus together at 9 p.m. August 5, 2015 with the bright Earth’s atmosphere removed. Created using Stellarium.

The reason I don’t discuss Mercury is that This will not be a good apparition of that planet.   Apparitions (appearances) of Mercury are best seen in the evening in late winter and spring.  Morning apparitions are best seen in late summer and autumn.

Naked eye Saturn

Saturn and the southern Milky Way and stars of summer at 10:30 p.m. August 5, 2015. Created using Stellarium.

Telescopic Saturn

What Saturn and its moons might appear like in a telescope at 10:30 p.m., August 5, 2015. Small telescopes will show only the moon Titan. Created using Stellarium.

Planets at sunrise ands sunset

This is a chart showing the sunrise and sunset skies for August 5, 2015 showing the location of the planets at that time. The traffic jam of planets near the western horizon at sunset is best seen in the first image above. Created using my LookingUp program. Click on the image to enlarge.