Archive for October 1, 2018

10/01/2018 – Ephemeris – Previewing October skies

October 1, 2018 Comments off

Ephemeris for Monday, October 1st. The Sun will rise at 7:40. It’ll be up for 11 hours and 42 minutes, setting at 7:23. The Moon, 1 day before last quarter, will rise at 11:55 this evening.

Let’s look at the skies for the month of October. The Sun will still be moving south rapidly. Daylight hours in the Interlochen/Traverse City area and will drop from 11 hours and 42 minutes today to 10 hours, 13 minutes at months end. The altitude of the sun above the southern horizon at local noon will be 42 degrees today in the Interlochen area and will descend to 31 degrees on Halloween. Venus will pass the Sun, moving from the evening sky to the morning sky on the 26th. Venus has not been too noticeable in the evening for the last month, but in early November it will seem to suddenly appear in the morning sky. It can be mistaken as a UFO, especially with its tiny Cheshire Cat crescent smile in binoculars or a small telescope.

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


October Evening Star Chart

October evening star chart

Star Chart for October 2018 (10 p.m. EDT October 15, 2018). Created using my LookingUp program. Click on image to enlarge.

The planets and stars are plotted for the 15th at 9 p.m. EDT in the evening and 6 a.m. for the morning chart. These are the chart times. Note that Traverse City is located approximately 45 minutes behind our time meridian. (An hour 45 minutes behind our daylight saving time meridian during EDT). To duplicate the star positions on a planisphere you may have to set it to 1 hour 45 minutes earlier than the current time.

Note the chart times of 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. are for the 15th. For each week before the 15th add ½ hour (28 minutes if you’re picky). For each week after the 15th subtract ½ hour. The planet positions are updated each Wednesday on this blog. For planet positions on dates other than the 15th, check the Wednesday planet posts on this blog.

October Morning Star Chart

October Morning Star Chart

Star Chart for October 2018 mornings based on 6 a.m. October 15th. Created using my LookingUp program. Click on image to enlarge.

For a list of constellation names to go with the abbreviations click here.

  • Pointer stars at the front of the bowl of the Big Dipper point to Polaris the North Star.
  • Follow the arc of the handle of the Big Dipper to the star Arcturus
  • The Summer Triangle is in red.
  • DracR on the evening star chart is the radiant for the Draconid meteor shwer which peaks on the 10th.
  • OriR on the morning star chart is the radiant of the Orionid meteor shower which peaks on the 21st.


      Time zone=EDT      
  Morning twilight Evening twilight Dark night Moon
Date Astronomical Nautical Nautical Astronomical Start End Illum.
2018-10-01 6h08m 6h42m 20h29m 21h03m 21h03m 23h56m 0.61
2018-10-02 6h09m 6h44m 20h27m 21h01m 21h01m 0.49
2018-10-03 6h11m 6h45m 20h25m 20h59m 20h59m 0h55m 0.37
2018-10-04 6h12m 6h46m 20h23m 20h57m 20h57m 2h02m 0.26
2018-10-05 6h13m 6h47m 20h22m 20h56m 20h56m 3h14m 0.16
2018-10-06 6h15m 6h49m 20h20m 20h54m 20h54m 4h28m 0.08
2018-10-07 6h16m 6h50m 20h18m 20h52m 20h52m 5h43m 0.03
2018-10-08 6h17m 6h51m 20h16m 20h50m 20h50m 6h17m 0
2018-10-09 6h18m 6h52m 20h14m 20h48m 20h48m 6h18m 0
2018-10-10 6h20m 6h53m 20h13m 20h46m 20h46m 6h20m 0.03
2018-10-11 6h21m 6h55m 20h11m 20h45m 20h56m 6h21m 0.08
2018-10-12 6h22m 6h56m 20h09m 20h43m 21h31m 6h22m 0.15
2018-10-13 6h23m 6h57m 20h07m 20h41m 22h11m 6h23m 0.24
2018-10-14 6h25m 6h58m 20h06m 20h39m 22h55m 6h25m 0.33
2018-10-15 6h26m 7h00m 20h04m 20h38m 23h44m 6h26m 0.43
2018-10-16 6h27m 7h01m 20h02m 20h36m 6h27m 0.52
2018-10-17 6h28m 7h02m 20h01m 20h35m 0h37m 6h28m 0.62
2018-10-18 6h30m 7h03m 19h59m 20h33m 1h33m 6h30m 0.71
2018-10-19 6h31m 7h04m 19h58m 20h31m 2h32m 6h31m 0.8
2018-10-20 6h32m 7h06m 19h56m 20h30m 3h32m 6h32m 0.87
2018-10-21 6h33m 7h07m 19h55m 20h28m 4h34m 6h33m 0.93
2018-10-22 6h34m 7h08m 19h53m 20h27m 5h37m 6h34m 0.93
2018-10-23 6h36m 7h09m 19h52m 20h25m 0.97
2018-10-24 6h37m 7h10m 19h50m 20h24m 1
2018-10-25 6h38m 7h12m 19h49m 20h22m 1
2018-10-26 6h39m 7h13m 19h47m 20h21m 0.97
2018-10-27 6h40m 7h14m 19h46m 20h19m 20h19m 21h01m 0.92
2018-10-28 6h42m 7h15m 19h44m 20h18m 20h18m 21h51m 0.85
2018-10-29 6h43m 7h17m 19h43m 20h17m 20h17m 22h48m 0.75
2018-10-30 6h44m 7h18m 19h42m 20h15m 20h15m 23h53m 0.64
2018-10-31 6h45m 7h19m 19h40m 20h14m 20h14m 0.53

Twilight calendar was generated using Cartes du Ciel (Sky Charts).

See my blog post: Twilight Zone for the definitions of the different periods of twilight here:

NASA Calendar of Planetary Events

Oct 01  Mo          Venus: 32.9° E
02 Tu 5:45 am Last Quarter
02 Tu 9:03 am Moon North Dec.: 21° N
03 We 11:10 pm Moon Ascending Node
04 Th 5:51 am Moon-Beehive: 1.3° N
05 Fr 5:58 pm Moon-Regulus: 1.9° S
05 Fr 6:29 pm Moon Perigee: 366400 km
08 Mo 11:47 pm New Moon
10 We 8:10 pm Draconid Shower: ZHR = 10
11 Th 5:21 pm Moon-Jupiter: 4.3° S
14 Su 11:01 pm Moon-Saturn: 2° S
15 Mo 1:26 pm Moon South Dec.: 21.2° S
15 Mo 10:32 pm Mercury-Venus: 6.2° N
16 Tu 2:02 pm First Quarter
17 We 8:03 am Moon Descending Node
17 We 3:16 pm Moon Apogee: 404200 km
18 Th 9:01 am Moon-Mars: 2.2° S
21 Su 1:03 pm Orionid Shower: ZHR = 20
23 Tu 8:43 pm Uranus Opposition
24 We 12:45 pm Full Moon
26 Fr 10:13 am Venus Inferior Conjunction with the Sun
27 Sa 9:04 am Moon-Aldebaran: 1.6° S
29 Mo 1:28 am Mercury-Jupiter: 3.1° N
29 Mo 1:34 am Moon North Dec.: 21.3° N
30 Tu 10:46 pm Moon Ascending Node
31 We 10:24 am Moon-Beehive: 1° N
31 We 11:40 am Last Quarter
31 We 3:05 pm Moon Perigee: 370200 km
Nov 01 Th Venus: 10.6° W

Sky Events Calendar by Fred Espenak and Sumit Dutta (NASA’s GSFC),

If you go to the above site you can print out a list like the above for the entire year
or calendar pages for your time zone.

Sun and Moon Rising and Setting Events

Ephemeris of Sky Events for NMC Observatory
October, 2018 – Local time zone: EDT
Date Sun Twilight* Moon Illum
    Rise Set Hours End Start Phase R/S** Time Fractn
Mon 1 07:40a 07:22p 11:42 08:25p 06:37a   Rise 11:55p 55%
Tue 2 07:41a 07:21p 11:39 08:23p 06:38a L Qtr Rise 12:55a 43%
Wed 3 07:42a 07:19p 11:36 08:22p 06:39a   Rise 02:02a 32%
Thu 4 07:44a 07:17p 11:33 08:20p 06:41a   Rise 03:14a 22%
Fri 5 07:45a 07:15p 11:30 08:18p 06:42a   Rise 04:28a 13%
Sat 6 07:46a 07:13p 11:27 08:16p 06:43a   Rise 05:42a 6%
Sun 7 07:47a 07:12p 11:24 08:14p 06:44a   Rise 06:56a 2%
Mon 8 07:48a 07:10p 11:21 08:13p 06:46a New Set 07:24p 0%
Tue 9 07:50a 07:08p 11:18 08:11p 06:47a   Set 07:53p 1%
Wed 10 07:51a 07:06p 11:15 08:09p 06:48a   Set 08:23p 4%
Thu 11 07:52a 07:04p 11:12 08:07p 06:49a   Set 08:56p 10%
Fri 12 07:54a 07:03p 11:09 08:06p 06:50a   Set 09:31p 17%
Sat 13 07:55a 07:01p 11:06 08:04p 06:52a   Set 10:11p 25%
Sun 14 07:56a 06:59p 11:03 08:02p 06:53a   Set 10:55p 34%
Mon 15 07:57a 06:57p 11:00 08:01p 06:54a   Set 11:43p 43%
Tue 16 07:59a 06:56p 10:57 07:59p 06:55a F Qtr Set 12:36a 52%
Wed 17 08:00a 06:54p 10:54 07:57p 06:57a   Set 01:33a 62%
Thu 18 08:01a 06:52p 10:51 07:56p 06:58a   Set 02:31a 71%
Fri 19 08:02a 06:51p 10:48 07:54p 06:59a   Set 03:32a 79%
Sat 20 08:04a 06:49p 10:45 07:53p 07:00a   Set 04:34a 86%
Sun 21 08:05a 06:47p 10:42 07:51p 07:01a   Set 05:37a 92%
Mon 22 08:06a 06:46p 10:39 07:49p 07:03a   Set 06:41a 97%
Tue 23 08:08a 06:44p 10:36 07:48p 07:04a   Set 07:48a 99%
Wed 24 08:09a 06:43p 10:33 07:46p 07:05a Full Rise 07:13p 100%
Thu 25 08:10a 06:41p 10:30 07:45p 07:06a   Rise 07:44p 98%
Fri 26 08:12a 06:40p 10:27 07:44p 07:08a   Rise 08:19p 94%
Sat 27 08:13a 06:38p 10:25 07:42p 07:09a   Rise 09:01p 87%
Sun 28 08:14a 06:37p 10:22 07:41p 07:10a   Rise 09:51p 79%
Mon 29 08:16a 06:35p 10:19 07:40p 07:11a   Rise 10:48p 69%
Tue 30 08:17a 06:34p 10:16 07:38p 07:12a   Rise 11:53p 58%
Wed 31 08:18a 06:32p 10:13 07:37p 07:14a L Qtr Rise 01:02a 47%
* Nautical Twilight
** Moonrise or moonset, whichever occurs between sunset and sunrise