Home > Comet, Ephemeris Program, Observing, Planets > 12/19/2018 -Ephemeris – The Bright planets and a departing comet for this week

12/19/2018 -Ephemeris – The Bright planets and a departing comet for this week

December 19, 2018

Ephemeris for Wednesday, December 19th. The Sun will rise at 8:15. It’ll be up for 8 hours and 48 minutes, setting at 5:04. The Moon, 3 days before full, will set at 5:34 tomorrow morning.

Let’s look at the bright planets for tonight. In the evening sky we have Mars still visible, but Saturn is lost in the bright twilight. It will pass conjunction with the Sun on New Years day. Mars will be due south at 6:19 p.m., and it will set at 12:08 a.m. Mars is moving eastward, crossing the constellation of Aquarius until the 21st, when it enters Pisces. Comet Wirtanen is moving northward, to the left of the Pleiades and fading as the moonlight gets brighter. On the 23rd at 9 p.m. it will be a degree and a half, that’s 3 moon widths below and a bit left of the star Capella. Venus, our brilliant morning star, will rise at 4:20 a.m. in the east-southeast. The planets Jupiter and Mercury will be low on the southeastern horizon by 7 a.m. tomorrow..

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


Bright planets and the Moon

Evening planets

Mars, and the Moon at 8 p.m. tonight December 19, 2018. Click on image to enlarge. Created using Stellarium.

Binocular Moon

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

Morning planets

Morning planets Venus, Mercury and Jupiter on December 20, 2018, 7 a.m.. Created using Stellarium.

Telescopic Venus

Telescopic view of Venus tomorrow morning December 20, 2018. Created using Stellarium.

Planets and the Moon on a single night

Planets, two comets and the Moon at sunset and sunrise of a single night starting with sunset on the right on December 19, 2018. The night ends on the left with sunrise on the 20th. Click on the image to enlarge. Created using my LookingUp program.


Comet C/2018 V1

Comet C/2018 V1 (Machholz-Fijikawa-Iwamoto) in twilight starting tonight December 19, 2018. This comet is basically invisible in the evening twilight of 6 p.m. on the rest of the nights because the stars in the field will set 4 minutes earlier each successive evening. The latest magnitude observed is two magnitudes brighter than shown here. Created using Cartes du Ciel (Sky Charts).

Comet 46P/Wirtanen

Comet 46P/Wirtanen positions for the next week in a bright moonlit sky. Positions are marked with month-date and magnitude. The observations are about 5.5 magnitudes brighter than shown here. Star field position is for 9 p.m. on the 19th. Click on the image to enlarge. Created using Cartes du Ciel (Sky Charts).

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