Fri., Sept. 23 6:29 6:37
Sat., Sept. 24 6:30 6:36
Sun., Sept. 25 6:31 6:34
Mon., Sept. 26 6:32 6:32
Tues., Sept. 27 6:33 6:30
Wed., Sept. 28 6:34 6:29
Thurs., Sept. 29 6:35 6:27
Fri., Sept. 30 6:36 6:25
A thin crescent moon appears tomorrow morning under the bright red planet Mars. The two are in the zodiacal constellation Cancer. Mars is starting to show signs of brightening high in the eastern sky as it gets closer. The planet is 176 million miles away. Last May, Mars was 213 million miles away.
The red planet will get plenty of attention in the new year when it reaches opposition in March. By then, the planet will be only 62 million miles away, not as close as in past periods of opposition, but worthy of considerable note. The last time March was in opposition was in January of 2010.
Use the moon as a guide tomorrow morning to find Mars. It is the brightest “star” in the celestial neighborhood.
The moon slips out of sight early in the week. New Moon is on Tuesday.
The moon reappears in our night sky on Thursday night. More will see the moon when it is higher in the west on Thursday night. The moon is moving through the zodiacal constellation Virgo and into Libra.
The easiest planet to spot is Jupiter, rising in the east about an hour or two after sunset. Jupiter appears in the small zodiacal constellation Aries. Other than our moon, there is not a brighter celestial object in our night sky. Jupiter is a brilliant beacon against the dark night. The best time to look is after 10 p.m., when the planet is high in the east.