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Posts Tagged ‘Moon’

12/14/2017 – Ephemeris – The Moon wanders over to Jupiter this morning

December 14, 2017 1 comment

Dec 14. This is Bob Moler with Ephemeris for Thursday, December 14th. The Sun will rise at 8:11. It’ll be up for 8 hours and 50 minutes, setting at 5:02. The Moon, half way from last quarter to new, will rise at 5:26 tomorrow morning.

This morning the planet Jupiter will appear right below the crescent Moon. Jupiter is hard to miss, even without the Moon to point it out. It is with the rare exception of Mars when being its closest to the Earth the second brightest of the planets, after Venus. Speaking of Mars, which is to the upper right of Jupiter and has a reddish hue, if you’re going to send anything to Mars, next spring is the time to do it. Flight times to Mars are 6 to 7 months. The midpoint of the flight is when Mars is closest to the Earth, which next year is July 31st. NASA’s Insight Lander, grounded in 2016 due to an instrument failure has to wait 26 months for the next launch opportunity in May of next year.

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

Addendum

The Moon, Jupiter, Mars

The Moon, Jupiter and Mars this morning, December 14, 2017. Earth shine should be visible as shown, though not as prominent. Created using Stellarium.

Hohmann orbit to Mars

A Hohmann lowest energy transfer orbit to Mars. This diagram is for the Mars Exploration Rovers Spirit and Opportunity launched in 2003, arrived in 2004. Solid planets, Spirit launch and arrival. Ghost planets, Opportunity launch and arrival. Credit NASA/JPL.

What’s a Hohmann transfer orbit?  NASA explains.

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12/13/2017 – Ephemeris – The bright planets of morning

December 13, 2017 1 comment

Ephemeris for Wednesday, December 13th. The Sun will rise at 8:11. It’ll be up for 8 hours and 51 minutes, setting at 5:02. The Moon, 3 days past last quarter, will rise at 4:26 tomorrow morning.

Let’s take our weekly look at the bright planets. We have no bright planets in the evening sky now. While Uranus and Neptune are evening planets, they require binoculars or a telescope to spot. The morning sky is now host to three planets, though Venus, the brightest will rise too close to the Sun to spot. It’s way on the other side of the Sun, and it will pass behind the Sun in superior conjunction January 6th. At 7 this morning Mars is below the crescent Moon in the southeast while Jupiter is a lot brighter and below and left of it. The Moon will be above it tomorrow morning. Mars will rise tomorrow morning at 3:58. Jupiter will rise an hour later at 4:54. Remember that the Geminid meteor shower will reach its peak tonight through tomorrow morning. It’s the best meteor shower of the year.

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

Addendum

Morning planets

Mars, Jupiter and the Moon this morning at 7 a.m., December 13, 2017. Created using Stellarium.

Binocular Moon

The Moon as it might be seen in binoculars this morning at 7 a.m. December 13, 2017. Created using Stellarium.

Jupiter and moons

Jupiter and its 4 Galilean moons as they might be seen in a telescope at 7 a.m. this morning, December 13, 2017. Created using Cartes du Ciel (Sky Charts).

Planets at sunset and sunrise of a single night

Planets at sunset and sunrise of a single night starting with sunset on the right on December 13, 2017. The night ends on the left with sunrise on the 14th. Click on the image to enlarge. Created using my LookingUp program.

Categories: Ephemeris Program, Planets Tags: , ,

12/06/2017 – Ephemeris – Where did all the evening planets go?

December 6, 2017 1 comment

Ephemeris for Wednesday, December 6th. The Sun will rise at 8:04. It’ll be up for 8 hours and 57 minutes, setting at 5:02. The Moon, 3 days past full, will rise at 8:43 this evening.

Let’s take our weekly look at the bright planets. Saturn and Mercury are very close together, but too low after sunset to spot from up North here. Mercury will set at 5:50, while Saturn will set 9 minutes later. While Uranus and Neptune are evening planets, they require binoculars or a telescope to spot. (This is beyond the scope of this program, which is geared to naked eye observing or easy things to find and observe with binoculars or a small telescope).   The morning sky is now host to three planets, though Venus, the brightest will rise close to sun will rise at 7:24 this morning. It’s way on the other side of the Sun, and it will pass behind the Sun in superior conjunction a month from today. At 7 this morning Jupiter is bright, low in the east-southeast, while Mars, the Red Planet is just left of the brighter star Spica, which has a bluish hue. They are higher than Jupiter and to the southeast. Mars will rise tomorrow morning at 4:03. Jupiter will rise more than an hour later at 5:14.

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

Addendum

Stellarium is unable to display Mercury or Saturn in twilight for tonight.

Binocular Moon

The Moon as it might be seen in binoculars at 9:30 p.m. December 6, 2017. Created using Stellarium.

Morning planets

Mars and Jupiter in the morning at 7 a.m. December 7, 2017. Click on the image to enlarge. Created using Stellarium.

Jupiter and moons

Jupiter and moons on the mornings of December 6th and 7th, 2017. Ganymede and Europa will transit the planet on the 7th later in the morning and in the afternoon to be visible for folks west of here. Created using Cartes du Ciel (Sky Charts).

Planets at sunset and sunrise of a single night

Planets at sunset and sunrise of a single night starting with sunset on the right on December 6, 2017. The night ends on the left with sunrise on the 7th. Click on the image to enlarge. Created using my LookingUp program.

11/29/2017 – Ephemeris – The Bright planets this week

November 29, 2017 1 comment

Ephemeris for Wednesday, November 29th. The Sun will rise at 7:57. It’ll be up for 9 hours and 7 minutes, setting at 5:04. The Moon, 3 days past first quarter, will set at 3:54 tomorrow morning.

Let’s take our weekly look at the bright planets. Mercury is dropping back to the Sun and is fading as its phase changes to a crescent  It will be below and left of Saturn tonight and actually brighter than Saturn. Saturn is sinking low in the southwestern sky. It is becoming harder to spot each evening. Tonight it will set at 6:24 p.m. The morning sky is now host to three planets, though Venus, the brightest will rise at 7:03 this morning and will be fighting twilight as it rises. It’s way on the other side of the Sun, and very tiny in telescopes, though nearly fully illuminated. It’s 156 million miles (251 million km) away. First to rise in the morning is Mars which will rise in the east at 4:07 a.m. tomorrow, Jupiter, will follow and rise at 5:34 a.m. tomorrow.

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

Addendum

Evening planets

Mercury and Saturn at 5:45 p.m., about 45 minutes after sunset, November 29, 2017. Click on the image to enlarge. Created using Stellarium.

Binocular Moon

The Moon as it might be seen in binoculars at 7 p.m., November 29, 2017. Created using Stellarium.

Morning planets

Mars and Jupiter at 7 a.m., November 30, 2017. Created using Stellarium.

Jupiter and moons

Jupiter and its 4 Galilean moons as they might be seen in a telescope at 7 a.m. November 30, 2017. Created using Cartes du Ciel (Sky Charts).

Planets at sunset and sunrise of a single night

Planets at sunset and sunrise of a single night starting with sunset on the right on November 29, 2017. The night ends on the left with sunrise on the 30th. Click on the image to enlarge. Created using my LookingUp program.

11/20/2017 – Ephemeris – The Moon is near Saturn tonight and the approaching signs of winter

November 20, 2017 1 comment

Ephemeris for Monday, November 20th. The Sun will rise at 7:46. It’ll be up for 9 hours and 23 minutes, setting at 5:09. The Moon, 2 days past new, will set at 7:04 this evening.

Tonight the two day old Moon will appear near Saturn. The ringed planet will appear to the left and a bit below the thin crescent Moon before they set about an hour later. The approaching winter season and the resumption of standard time have dropped sunset to 5:09 in the Interlochen/Traverse City area. Our sunset will drop another 11 minutes before slowly recovering 19 days from now. Two to three hours later another sign of the approaching winter season will appear, as the constellation of the giant hunter Orion rises in the east. He is resplendent with his nearly vertical belt of three stars rising, framed to the left and right by the bright stars reddish Betelgeuse and bluish Rigel. He will dominate our evening skies until April.

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

Addendum

Saturn and the Moon

The Moon and Saturn at 6 p.m. November 20, 2017. Created using Stellarium.

Orion rising

Finder chart for the rising Orion at 9 p.m., November 30, 2017. Created using Stellarium and GIMP.

11/15/2017 – Ephemeris – All the bright planets are visible for observers at both dusk and dawn

November 15, 2017 Comments off

Ephemeris for Wednesday, November 15th. The Sun will rise at 7:39. It’ll be up for 9 hours and 34 minutes, setting at 5:14. The Moon, 3 days before new, will rise at 5:32 tomorrow morning.

Let’s take our weekly look at the bright planets. Mercury is briefly visible in binoculars in the southwest in the evening, setting at 6:06 p.m., and will reach it’s greatest elongation from the Sun in 8 days. Saturn is sinking low in the southwestern sky. Saturn’s rings are still spectacular in telescopes, but since Saturn is so low in the sky the thick atmosphere makes Saturn fuzzy and seemingly to go in and out of focus. Saturn will set at 7:12 p.m. Tomorrow in the morning sky, Mars, heading away from the Sun will rise in the east at 4:16 a.m., Jupiter, also moving away from the Sun, will rise at in the east-southeast at 6:14, leaving Venus behind after their conjunction two days ago, which will rise at 6:30.

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

Addendum

Evening Planets

Saturn and Mercury very low in the southwest at 6:45p.m. November 15, 2017. That’s about half an hour after sunset. Click on the image to enlarge. Created using Stellarium.

Tlescopic Saturn

Saturn and its brightest moon Titan in the evening November 15, 2017. Created using Cartes du Ciel (Sky Charts).

Morning Planets

Mars Jupiter Venus and the Moon at 7 a.m., November 16, 2017. The Moon is actually a thin crescent as seen below. Created using Stellarium.

The Moon

The Moon as it might be seen in binoculars. This was created using Hallo Northern Sky. However it doesn’t show earth shine that should easily be seen in binoculars.

Planets and the Moon on a single night

Planets at sunset and sunrise of a single night starting with sunset on the right on November 15, 2017. The night ends on the left with sunrise on the 16th. Click on the image to enlarge. Created using my LookingUp program.

11/08/2017 – Ephemeris – Jupiter becomes visible in the morning (The bright planets this week)

November 8, 2017 1 comment

Ephemeris for Wednesday, November 8th. The Sun will rise at 7:30. It’ll be up for 9 hours and 51 minutes, setting at 5:21. The Moon, 2 days before last quarter, will rise at 9:52 this evening.

Let’s take our weekly look at the bright planets. Saturn is sinking low in the southwestern sky in the evening. Saturn’s rings are still spectacular in telescopes, but since Saturn is so low in the sky the turbulence of the thick atmosphere makes Saturn fuzzy and seemingly to go in and out of focus. Saturn will set at 7:37 p.m. Tomorrow in the morning sky, Mars, heading away from the Sun will rise in the east at 4:20 a.m., Venus, is heading closer to the Sun, will rise at 6:11 in the east-southeast. Jupiter is in the morning sky but lower than Venus, rising in the east-southeast at 6:33. Mercury has moved into the evening sky and will reach it’s greatest elongation from the Sun in 15 days, but will not be easily visible even then.

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

Addendum

Evening Planets

Saturn with Mercury (unlabeled) at the horizon at 6 p.m., November 8, 2017. Click on the image to enlarge. Create using Stellarium.

Saturn and Titan

Saturn and its brightest moon Titan in the evening November 8, 2017. Created using Cartes du Ciel (Sky Charts).

Binocular Moon

The Moon as it might be seen in binoculars at 10:30 p.m., November 8, 2017. Created using Stellarium.

Morning planets

Mars, Venus and Jupiter at 7 a.m., November 9, 2017. Jupiter will come abreast of Venus on the morning of the 13th. when they will be less than the width of the Moon apart. Created using Stellarium.

Planets and the Moon on a single night

Planets at sunset and sunrise of a single night starting with sunset on the right on November 8, 2017. The night ends on the left with sunrise on the 9th. Click on the image to enlarge. Created using my LookingUp program.