• Mark Alan Lovewell

Moon and Morning Planets

The two visible planets, Mars and Jupiter, are remarkably close together in the morning sky. They are less than one degree apart going into the weekend. If you happen to be outside at 5 o’clock or earlier in the mornings ahead take a good look. The proximity of the two dazzles the imagination. They look like they will collide. Or, to be more creative, they look like they are in a conversation.

Astronomers tell us that this phenomenon, this lineup, is really quite safe. The two planets are 378 million miles apart. Jupiter is 548,700,000 miles away while Mars is 176,700,000 miles away.

The show gets even better later next week. Both Mars and Jupiter part ways, they separate. Nearby is the waning crescent moon. All three form a tight triangle on Thursday morning. All three are in the zodiacal constellation Libra.

Mercury, Venus and Saturn, our three other usually visible planets, can’t be seen this week or most of the month. They are too close to the glare of the sun.

 

Sunrise and Sunset
Day Sunrise Sunset
Fri., Jan. 5 7:08 4:25
Sat., Jan. 6 7:08 4:26
Sun., Jan. 7 7:08 4:27
Mon., Jan. 8 7:08 4:28
Tues., Jan. 9 7:08 4:29
Wed., Jan. 10 7:08 4:30
Thurs., Jan. 11 7:07 4:31
Fri., Jan. 12 7:07 4:32

Temperatures and Precipitations
Day Max (Fº) Min (Fº) Inches
Dec. 29 15 5 0.00
Dec. 30 20 8 0.00
Dec. 31 22 13 *0.11
Jan. 1 20 4 0.00
Jan. 2 14 5 0.00
Jan. 3 25 10 0.00
Jan. 4 38 20 0.48

 

Water temperature in Edgartown harbor: 37º F

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