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Monday, April 10, 2017

 

The Sky This Week - ThursdayApril 13 to Thursday April 20

The Last Quarter Moon is Wednesday April 18. Mars is low in the twilight. Jupiter and the bright star Spica are close in the late evening skies, with Jupiter just past opposition. Saturn is low in the late evening sky and is close to the Moon on the16th. Venus climbs higher in the morning sky

The Last Quarter Moon is Wednesday April 18. The Moon is at apogee, when it is furthest from the Earth, on the 15th.

Evening sky on Saturday April 15 looking west as seen from Adelaide at 18:47 ACST (60 minutes after sunset). Mars is low above the horizon, below Aldebaran and close to the Pleiades.

 Similar views will be seen throughout Australia at the equivalent local time (that is 60 minutes after local sunset, click to embiggen).

Mercury is lost in twilight.

Mars is in the western evening skies in Taurus It is is low in the dusk sky, but is the brightest object above the western horizon low in the late twilight below Aldebaran. Over the week Mars comes close to the Pleiades cluster, you will need a clear, unobscured level horizon to see this though.

Evening sky on Saturday April 15 looking east as seen from Adelaide at 19:16 ACST (90 minutes after sunset).  Jupiter is above the horizon close to the bright star Spica. The inset shows the telescopic view of Jupiter at 20:06 ACST on the 15th with Europa appearing from occultation.

Similar views will be seen elsewhere in Australia at the equivalent local time. that is 90 minutes after local sunset, click to embiggen).

Jupiter is rising at dusk and is now reasonably high above the horizon in the early evening this week. It is close to the bright star Spica, the brightest star in the constellation of Virgo.

Opposition, when Jupiter is biggest and brightest as seen from Earth, was on the 8th. Jupiter is rising as the sun sets and is visible all night long. Jupiter is a good telescopic target from around 8 pm on, and the dance of its Moons is visible even in binoculars. The following Jupiter events are in AEST.


Thu 13 Apr 22:58 Eur: Transit Begins               T
Thu 13 Apr 23:12 Eur: Shadow Transit Begins        ST
Fri 14 Apr 1:20 Eur: Transit Ends                 S
Fri 14 Apr 1:40 Eur: Shadow Transit Ends
Fri 14 Apr 2:47 GRS: Crosses Central Meridian
Fri 14 Apr 4:15 Io : Transit Begins               T
Fri 14 Apr 4:23 Io : Shadow Transit Begins        ST
Fri 14 Apr 22:38 GRS: Crosses Central Meridian
Sat 15 Apr 1:23 Io : Disappears into Occultation
Sat 15 Apr 3:45 Io : Reappears from Eclipse
Sat 15 Apr 18:29 GRS: Crosses Central Meridian
Sat 15 Apr 20:38 Eur: Reappears from Eclipse
Sat 15 Apr 22:41 Io : Transit Begins               T
Sat 15 Apr 22:51 Io : Shadow Transit Begins        ST
Sun 16 Apr 0:51 Io : Transit Ends                 S
Sun 16 Apr 1:03 Io : Shadow Transit Ends
Sun 16 Apr 4:25 GRS: Crosses Central Meridian
Sun 16 Apr 19:49 Io : Disappears into Occultation
Sun 16 Apr 22:13 Io : Reappears from Eclipse
Mon 17 Apr 0:16 GRS: Crosses Central Meridian
Mon 17 Apr 19:17 Io : Transit Ends                 S
Mon 17 Apr 19:31 Io : Shadow Transit Ends
Mon 17 Apr 20:07 GRS: Crosses Central Meridian
Tue 18 Apr 21:44 Gan: Disappears into Occultation
Wed 19 Apr 1:01 Gan: Reappears from Eclipse
Wed 19 Apr 1:54 GRS: Crosses Central Meridian
Wed 19 Apr 21:45 GRS: Crosses Central Meridian
 

Evening  sky on Saturday April 15 looking east as seen from Adelaide at 23:00 ACST.  Saturn is reasonably high above the horizon with the Moon nearby.

The inset shows the telescopic view of Saturn at this time. Similar views will be seen elsewhere in Australia at the equivalent local time. (click to embiggen).

 Saturn is now visible in the late evening skies this week. Saturn is  only a good telescopic target from midnight on. It continues to climb into the evening skys as the week progresses. It is within binocular distance of the Triffid and Lagoon nebula, although the closeness of the Moon this week will wash them out..

The constellation of Scorpio is a good guide to locating Saturn. The distinctive curl of Scorpio is easy to see above the north-eastern horizon, locate the bright red star, Antares, and the look below that towards the horizon, the next bright object is Saturn.

Morning sky on Saturday April 8 looking east as seen from Adelaide at 5:44  ACST (60 minutes before sunrise). The inset shows the telescopic view of Venus at this time.

 Similar views will be seen throughout Australia at the equivalent local time (that is 60 minutes before sunrise, click to embiggen).

Venus  climbs higher in the morning sky and is visible in telescopes as a thin crescent.



There are lots of interesting things in the sky to view with a telescope. If you don't have a telescope, now is a good time to visit one of your local astronomical societies open nights or the local planetariums.

Printable PDF maps of the Eastern sky at 10 pm AEST, Western sky at 10 pm AEST. For further details and more information on what's up in the sky, see Southern Skywatch.

Cloud cover predictions can be found at SkippySky.
Here is the near-real time satellite view of the clouds (day and night) http://satview.bom.gov.au/

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Comments:
Hi Ian, Will we get a decent view of Asteroid 2014 JO25 that will be making a close approach to Earth on April 19th?
 
G'Day Chris, we won't see the closest approach, that is NH only, but we can see it on the 20th under reasonably good conditions. http://astroblogger.blogspot.com.au/2017/04/seeing-asteroid-2014-j025-from.html
 
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