Starry Nights
With the moon in new moon phase on Monday, skies will be moonless this weekend, and ideal for stargazing. From sunset to nearly sunrise, through the weekend, the sky is without the brilliant moon to interfere. If the weather cooperates, even the faintest of stars will be viewable.
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Snow Moon and Spring
Next Monday night’s Snow Moon, a full moon, appears in the zodiacal constellation Cancer, a constellation we associate with spring. Though snow was in the air this week, spring isn’t that far away. More stars of spring start showing up late in the evening, after 11 p.m.
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Snow Moon and Spring
Next Monday night’s Snow Moon, a full moon, appears in the zodiacal constellation Cancer, a constellation we associate with spring. Though snow was in the air this week, spring isn’t that far away. More stars of spring start showing up late in the evening, after 11 p.m.
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Love Planet
Venus, the goddess of love, is high in the western sky tonight and for the nights ahead. The showing doesn’t get any better than this, especially since it coincides with Valentine’s Day tomorrow. The planet is high in the west at sunset, speeding along through the stars, keeping ahead of the movement of the sun.
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Crescent Moon
A thin crescent moon hangs low in the east-southeastern sky mornings this weekend. The moon appears close to the horizon and alongside three planets: Mercury, Jupiter and Mars. You’ll need help with a pair of binoculars to be certain to catch all of them amid the glare of dawn. Jupiter is the brightest of the three planets and in the middle. Mercury is to the right of Jupiter. Mars is to to the left of Jupiter. The eastern sky has to be clear down to the horizon and the timing has to be right. Look more than a half hour before sunrise. The field of view is only a few degrees. On Monday morning the moon appears even closer to the horizon and the three planets are to the right.
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Moving Venus
The brightest planet in the western sky is about to dramatically shift its place in the heavens. You have seen it if you have been outside after sunset. Venus is a spectacle, the brightest “star” in the sky.
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Venus and Saturn
Our skies at night have two planetary visitors. Venus is high in the western sky after sunset, and at the same time there is the ringed planet, Saturn, rising in the east. Both are bright and easy to spot.
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Venus
Venus, the brightest planet in our evening sky, is getting a bit more difficult to spot, appearing lower in the western sky than a week ago. The planet is sinking. By April, Venus shifts from an evening planet to a morning planet.
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Spring is Here
Today is the first day of spring and it arrived precisely at 7:44 a.m. This is the moment when the noontime sun crosses from the Southern Hemisphere, across the Equator, and into our Northern Hemisphere. From here on our days will get longer than our nights. Day and night are about even, at 12 hours, though the actual moment of sunrise and sunset is not so exact.
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Venus
It was only a few weeks ago that Venus was high in the western sky at sunset. We got a number of calls from observers who wondered what that bright planet was residing high in the west after sunset. Tonight you can’t find it in the night sky.
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