Southern Colorado Skies / March 4-10, 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

At the end of this week the last-quarter Moon makes a pass over Sagittarius in the morning sky. Mars and Saturn are fairly separated now, but are approaching each other – they will be within 1-1/4 degrees on April 2nd.

 

Here is a photo I took on Saturday (March 3rd) of Mercury only about 1 degree to the right of Venus. One degree is less than the width of your little finger held at arm’s length. The photo was taken through a 200mm camera lens, giving approximately the same perspective as binoculars.

Daylight Savings Time begins Sunday (March 11th) morning at 2:00 a.m. Don’t forget to “spring ahead” one hour.

Tuesday (March 6)

Look for Jupiter and the waning gibbous Moon tonight as they rise together around midnight and keep close company the rest of the night.

Thursday (March 8)

Last-quarter Moon occurs at 4:20 a.m. MST.

Saturday (March 10) and Sunday (March 11)

Look for the Moon to graze the “teapot” of Sagittarius and cruise slightly above Mars and Saturn, as shown in the above graphic..

DAYLIGHT

 

PLANETS

Mercury and Venus (both in Pisces)

Mercury and Venus appear within about one degree of each other early in the week (see last week’s blog).

Mars (in Ophiuchus)

Look for Mars to the lower left (east) of much brighter Jupiter. (See the above graphic.)

Don’t mistake reddish Mars for reddish Antares a little further down. Antares (translates as “anti Ares” or Mars’ opposite, because they look similar) is the alpha star in the constellation Scorpius.

Jupiter (in Libra)

Jupiter dominates the early-morning sky. Look for it in the south before dawn.

Saturn (in Sagittarius)

Saturn offers a decent low in the dawn light to the southeast. If you don’t see Saturn right away, try drawing an imaginary line from bright Jupiter through Mars and then continue it way down toward the horizon. (See the above graphic.)

Uranus (in Pisces)

Getting lower in the west at nightfall.

Neptune (in Aquarius)

Neptune is now lost in the sunset.

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 (March 5) 6:55:39 p.m. / Magnitude -5.8 / SSE / Elevation 52 degrees

Thursday (March 8) 6:42:29 p.m. / Magnitude -2.3 / SSE / Elevation 54 degrees

Saturday (March 10) 8:21:33 p.m. / Magnitude -5.2 / N / Elevation 9 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


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sometimes clouds are your friend with nightscape photos. This is a picture I took last January of the Moon, which is mostly obscured in the high clouds. That’s Jupiter to the lower right of the Moon, and Scorpius (do you see reddish Antares?) on the right side of the photo.

 

Daylight Savings Time begins Sunday (March 11th) morning at 2:00 a.m. Don’t forget to “spring ahead” one hour.

 

Tuesday (March 6)

Look for Jupiter and the waning gibbous Moon tonight as they rise together around midnight and keep close company the rest of the night.

Thursday (March 8)

Last-quarter Moon occurs at 4:20 a.m. MST.

Saturday (March 10) and Sunday (March 11)

Look for the Moon to graze the “teapot” of Sagittarius and cruise slightly above Mars and Saturn, as shown in the above graphic..

 

DAYLIGHT

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PLANETS

 

Mercury and Venus (both in Pisces)

Mercury and Venus appear within about one degree of each other early in the week (see last week’s blog).

Mars (in Ophiuchus)

Look for Mars to the lower left (east) of much brighter Jupiter. (See the above graphic.)

Don’t mistake reddish Mars for reddish Antares a little further down. Antares (translates as “anti Ares” or Mars’ opposite, because they look similar) is the alpha star in the constellation Scorpius.

Jupiter (in Libra)

Jupiter dominates the early-morning sky. Look for it in the south before dawn.

Saturn (in Sagittarius)

Saturn offers a decent low in the dawn light to the southeast. If you don’t see Saturn right away, try drawing an imaginary line from bright Jupiter through Mars and then continue it way down toward the horizon. (See the above graphic.)

Uranus (in Pisces)

Getting lower in the west at nightfall.

Neptune (in Aquarius)

Neptune is now lost in the sunset.

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 (March 5) 6:55:39 p.m. / Magnitude -5.9 / SSE / Elevation 52 degrees

Thursday (March 8) 6:42:29 p.m. / Magnitude -2.3 / SSE / Elevation 54 degrees

Check above / More?????

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

Sometimes clouds are your friend with nightscape photos. This is a picture I took last January of the Moon, which is mostly obscured in the high clouds. That’s Jupiter to the lower right of the Moon, and Scorpius (do you see reddish Antares?) on the right side of the photo.

 

Daylight Savings Time begins Sunday (March 11th) morning at 2:00 a.m. Don’t forget to “spring ahead” one hour.

 

Tuesday (March 6)

Look for Jupiter and the waning gibbous Moon tonight as they rise together around midnight and keep close company the rest of the night.

Thursday (March 8)

Last-quarter Moon occurs at 4:20 a.m. MST.

Saturday (March 10) and Sunday (March 11)

Look for the Moon to graze the “teapot” of Sagittarius and cruise slightly above Mars and Saturn, as shown in the above graphic..

 

DAYLIGHT

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PLANETS

 

Mercury and Venus (both in Pisces)

Mercury and Venus appear within about one degree of each other early in the week (see last week’s blog).

Mars (in Ophiuchus)

Look for Mars to the lower left (east) of much brighter Jupiter. (See the above graphic.)

Don’t mistake reddish Mars for reddish Antares a little further down. Antares (translates as “anti Ares” or Mars’ opposite, because they look similar) is the alpha star in the constellation Scorpius.

Jupiter (in Libra)

Jupiter dominates the early-morning sky. Look for it in the south before dawn.

Saturn (in Sagittarius)

Saturn offers a decent low in the dawn light to the southeast. If you don’t see Saturn right away, try drawing an imaginary line from bright Jupiter through Mars and then continue it way down toward the horizon. (See the above graphic.)

Uranus (in Pisces)

Getting lower in the west at nightfall.

Neptune (in Aquarius)

Neptune is now lost in the sunset.

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 (March 5) 6:55:39 p.m. / Magnitude -5.9 / SSE / Elevation 52 degrees

Thursday (March 8) 6:42:29 p.m. / Magnitude -2.3 / SSE / Elevation 54 degrees

Check above / More?????

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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