Southern Colorado Skies / January 21-27, 2018

Consider a planetarium program to help you plan your observations. There are many commercial products available; an excellent program (STELLARIUM) is available free at http://www.stellarium.org/.

THIS WEEK

The Moon makes a pass through Taurus later this week.

(Not sure what that “M” object is in the above graphic? Check out my short article at http://scaspueblo.com/blog/2017/03/16/what-is-a-messier-object/.)

Wednesday (January 24)

First-quarter Moon at 3:20 p.m. MST.

Friday (January 26)

Look for the waxing Moon as it shines just to the east of the Hyades star cluster and reddish Aldebaran. The Pleiades star cluster watches over the action from the upper right (west). See the above graphic.

DAYLIGHT

PLANETS

Mercury (in Sagittarius)

Mercury is now lost in the glare of the Sun.

Venus (in Capricornus)

Venus is still deep in the glare of the Sun this week.

Mars and Jupiter (both in Libra)

Both planets rise about 2 or 3 a.m. and are well up in the south-southeastern sky by early dawn.

Don’t mistake reddish Mars for reddish Antares a little further down. Antares is the alpha star in the constellation Scorpius.

Saturn (in Sagittarius)

Saturn is coming into good viewing very low in the dawn light. Look for it just above the southeast horizon about 45 minutes before dawn.

Uranus (in Pisces)

High in the southwest at nightfall.

Neptune (in Aquarius)

Low in the west-southwest at nightfall.

BRIGHT IRIDIUM FLARES

The following data are based on my location in Pueblo West, Colorado. If you live well outside this area, you should consider checking this information for your location in order to be assured of accurate times, elevations, etc. If you’re unfamiliar with Iridium flares, check out my short article at: http://scaspueblo.com/blog/2017/02/25/iridium-flares/.

Monday (January 22) 5:17:00 a.m. / Magnitude -2.4 / N / Elevation 36 degrees

Tuesday (January 23) 5:11:35 a.m. / Magnitude -3.5 / N / Elevation 34 degrees

INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION (ISS)

These are too numerous to list here! If you’re seriously interested, load the ISS DETECTOR app on your smart phone or tablet.

Carpe noctem

Dave Furry

Pueblo West, Colorado

 

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