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USPS Star Calendar for 5-11 May 28 April 2013

Posted by amedalen in May 2013.
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5 May    Leo, the Lion, dominates the southern sky. Its brightest star, magnitude 1.3 Regulus, is easy to spot in the south. Magnitude 0.5 Procyon is 4 fist-widths to Regulus’ lower right. Magnitude 2.2 Alphard, in the constellation Hydra, the Sea Serpent, is 2 fist-widths below Regulus. Magnitude 1.2 Spica lies far to the lower left of Regulus. Noticeably brighter, Saturn is just beyond Spica.

6 May    The bright star halfway up from the eastern horizon is magnitude 0.2 Arcturus, in the constellation Boötes, the Herdsman. Arcturus comes from the Greek, meaning “guardian of the bear.”

7 May    In the early evening, the Big Dipper is upside down high overhead with its handle extending to the right.

9 May    For the best view of today’s annular solar eclipse, you will have to go to Australia or New Guinea. Those in Hawaii will see a partial eclipse. New moon at 0028 UT

10 May    The moon sets less than an hour after the sun but if you have a clear view of the western horizon, you may be able to catch a glimpse of the thin waxing crescent moon just to the lower left of Venus.

USPS Star Calendar for 28 April-4 May 21 April 2013

Posted by amedalen in April 2013, May 2013.
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28 Apr    Before first light, look for Antares 3 finger-widths to the moon’s lower right low in the southwest. Only three days past full, the moon is more than 90 percent illuminated.

1 May    May Day, related to the Celtic festival Beltane, features bonfires and maypoles.

2 May    Low in the southeast before dawn, the last-quarter moon is 2½ fist-widths below or to the lower left of bright magnitude 0.9 Altair.

4 May    Get out and enjoy the free light show during the next few moonless nights. Orion sets shortly after sunset, leaving Gemini in the west. Look 3 fist-widths to Gemini’s lower right to see magnitude 0.2 Capella, in the constellation Auriga, the Charioteer.

USPS Star Calendar for 21-27 April 14 April 2013

Posted by amedalen in April 2013.
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22 Apr    Rising more than 3 hours before sunset, the moon is midway between Regulus, 2½ fist-widths to the upper right, and Spica, to the lower left, high in the east at dusk.

24 Apr    Low in the east at dusk, the nearly full moon passes within 0.19 degrees of Spica tonight.

25 Apr    Saturn rises at sunset, and the moon follows 15 minutes later. At midnight, Saturn is 2 finger-widths above the moon low in the southeast. Full moon at 1957 UT

26 Apr    The full moon is 3 finger-widths to Saturn’s left low in the west before dawn.

27 Apr    Rising 2½ hours after sunset, the waning gibbous moon is at perigee, 56.80 Earth-radii, 362,000 kilometers, away.

USPS Star Calendar for 14-20 April 7 April 2013

Posted by amedalen in April 2013.
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14 Apr    The waxing crescent moon is less than 2 finger-widths to Jupiter’s left or upper left at dusk.

15 Apr    Three prominent constellations surround the moon tonight: Orion to the lower left, Gemini to the upper left and Taurus to the lower right. Home to the navigational star Capella, the lesser-known constellation Auriga, the Charioteer, is to the moon’s upper right. The moon is at apogee, 63.48 Earth-radii, or 405,000 kilometers, away. The equation of time is zero, which means sundial (apparent solar) time and mean solar time are the same.

16 Apr    Gemini’s brightest stars, Pollux and Castor, are 1½ fist-widths above the moon tonight. Magnitude 1.9 Alhena is 1 finger-width below the moon. Less than a third of the moon’s surface is illuminated

17 Apr    The waxing crescent moon lies midway between magnitude 1.2 Pollux, 1 fist-width to the upper right, and magnitude 0.5 Procyon, to the lower left.

18 Apr    Procyon is a little more than 1 fist-width to the first-quarter moon’s lower right, and magnitude 1.3 Regulus is 2½ fist-widths to the moon’s upper left.

20 Apr    Regulus is less than 3 finger-widths above or to the upper left of the waxing gibbous moon, high in the south at dusk. About two-thirds of the moon’s surface is illuminated.