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USPS Star Calendar for 30 January to 5 February 23 January 2011

Posted by amedalen in February 2011, January 2011.
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30 Jan    With only 15 percent of its surface illuminated, the moon rises 2½ hours before the sun. To get a glimpse, you’ll need to look low in the southeast early this morning. Venus is 3 finger-widths to the moon’s upper right.

2 Feb     Today is Groundhog Day.

3 Feb     New moon at 0231 UT

5 Feb     The moon sets less than 3 hours after the sun tonight. Look low in the west at dusk to see the waxing crescent moon 1½ fist-widths to Jupiter’s lower right. Only 5 percent of the moon’s surface is illuminated.

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USPS Star Calendar for 23 to 29 January 16 January 2011

Posted by amedalen in January 2011.
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23 Jan    Late tonight, the moon rises an hour before magnitude 0.7 Saturn and is soon followed by magnitude 1.2 Spica. Before dawn tomorrow, they form a triangle high in the south.

24 Jan    Saturn rises a few minutes before the waning gibbous moon late tonight. Tomorrow morning, Spica is less than 2 finger-widths to the moon’s upper left, and Saturn is 1 fist-width to its upper right. About three-fourths of the moon’s surface is illuminated.

26 Jan    Low in the south at dawn, Saturn is 2 fist-widths to the moon’s upper right and Venus is 4 fist-widths to its lower left. Last-quarter moon at 1257 UT

27 Jan    In the south before dawn, Saturn is 3 fist-widths to the moon’s upper right and Venus is the same distance to the lower left.

28 Jan    Low in the southwest before dawn, the moon is in the head of the Scorpion, Scorpius. Magnitude 1.1 Antares is 2 finger-widths to the lower left, and brilliant magnitude -4.3 Venus is 2 fist-widths to the lower left. About one-third of the moon’s surface is illuminated.

29 Jan    The moon and Venus rise 4 hours before the sun and should be visible even after first light. Less than one-fourth of the moon’s surface is illuminated.

USPS Star Calendar for 16 to 22 January 9 January 2011

Posted by amedalen in January 2011.
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16 Jan    As the sky darkens, look for the waxing gibbous moon high in the east. Orion is to the lower right, and the Gemini Twins are to the lower left. Later, the moon rises high in the south with Orion standing upright directly below it and the Twins to its left or upper left.

17 Jan    Tonight, the moon is to the upper left of Orion, the Hunter. More than 95 percent of the moon’s surface is illuminated.

18 Jan    The moon rises an hour before sunset. As the stars become visible, the Gemini Twins are 1 fist-width to the left, and Orion is 2 to 3 fist-widths to the right. The bright star 1½ fist-widths to the moon’s lower left is magnitude 0.5 Procyon.

19 Jan    Late tonight, Procyon is 1½ fist-widths to the moon’s left high in the east, magnitude 1.3 Regulus is 2½ fist-widths to the lower left, and the Big Dipper stands on its handle far to the lower left. Full Wolf Moon at 2121 UT

20 Jan    Regulus is 1 fist-width to the moon’s lower left this evening.

21 Jan    Tonight the waning gibbous moon has moved to Regulus’ lower right.

22 Jan    The moon is at perigee, less than 225,558 miles or 56.88 Earth-radii away.

USPS Star Calendar for 9 to 15 January 2 January 2011

Posted by amedalen in January 2011.
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9 Jan     Magnitude -2.3 Jupiter is 4 finger-widths to the moon’s left tonight. Visible just after sunset, the moon and Jupiter set before midnight. Less than one-fourth of the moon’s surface is illuminated. Mercury is at its greatest elongation, 23 degrees west of the sun, and rises more than 2½ hours before the sun.

10 Jan    The moon is at apogee, 251,655 miles or 63.49 Earth-radii away. Jupiter is 1 fist-width below the moon high in the southwest tonight. They set before midnight.

12 Jan    First-quarter moon at 1131 UT

14 Jan    The Pleiades Cluster is 2 finger-widths to the left or upper left of the waxing gibbous moon high in the southwest this evening. Today marks the start of the Julian new year. The Julian calendar was superseded by the Gregorian calendar in 1582.

15 Jan    The moon forms a triangle with the Pleiades and magnitude 1.1 Aldebaran. About three-fourths of the moon’s surface is illuminated.

USPS Star Calendar for 2 to 8 January 26 December 2010

Posted by amedalen in January 2011.
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2 Jan     Mercury is 2 finger-widths to the thin crescent moon’s upper left low in the southeast just before dawn.

3 Jan     At perihelion, Earth is nearest to the sun for the year. Tonight and tomorrow night when the Quadrantids meteor shower peaks, up to 40 meteors per hour will radiate from the constellation Boötes, which rises low in the east around midnight.

4 Jan     A partial solar eclipse will be visible in most parts of northern Africa, Europe and Asia. New moon at 0903 UT

7 Jan     The waxing crescent moon sets 3½ hours after the sun this evening. Less than 10 percent of the moon’s surface is illuminated. The bright “star” 3 fist-widths to the moon’s upper left is magnitude -2.3 Jupiter.

8 Jan     Venus is at its greatest elongation west, 47 degrees from the sun. It rises more than 3½ hours before the sun.

USPS Star Calendar for 26 December to 1 January 19 December 2010

Posted by amedalen in December 2010, January 2011.
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28   High in the south at dawn, magnitude 0.8 Saturn is 4 finger-widths to the moon’s upper left and magnitude 1.2 Spica is 1 fist-width to the moon’s lower left. Magnitude -4.5 Venus is 2½ fist-widths beyond Spica. Last-quarter moon at 0418 UT (2318 EST yesterday)

29   Spica is directly above the moon before dawn, and Saturn is to the upper right.

30   Venus is a little more than 1 fist-width to the moon’s left or lower left this morning.

31   Venus is 3 finger-widths to the moon’s upper left this morning. Just above the horizon to the lower left, try to spot magnitude 0.4 Mercury as it peeks above the horizon about 1.5 hours before sunrise. Use binoculars.

1   The moon rises more than 2 hours before the sun. Antares is one finger-width below the thin waning crescent moon. Brilliant magnitude -4.5 Venus is 1½ fist-widths to the moon’s upper right, and Mercury is 1 fist-width to the lower left. Only 10 percent of the moon’s surface is illuminated.