10/27/2016 – Ephemeris – Finding the Great Andromeda Galaxy
Ephemeris for Thursday, October 27th. The Sun will rise at 8:14. It’ll be up for 10 hours and 23 minutes, setting at 6:37. The Moon, 3 days before new, will rise at 6:02 tomorrow morning.
The closest large galaxy to our Milky Way galaxy is the Great Andromeda Galaxy seen in the eastern sky when it gets dark. It is barely visible to the naked eye. To locate it first find the Great Square of Pegasus high in the east, standing on one corner. The left star of the square is the head of the constellation Andromeda. Follow two stars to the left and a bit downward, then two stars straight up. The galaxy is near that last star as a small smudge of light. Binoculars are the best way to see it as a thin spindle of light. A telescope can see only the bright nucleus of the galaxy, that spans 6 Moon diameters in photographs. M31 is its first catalog designation and it is two and a half million light years away.
Times are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.