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Monday, December 7, 2015

Daytime Occultation of Venus TODAY! LUNCHTIME (on East Coast)

Thanks to my Michael EI0CL for alerting us to this.  It will happen today, very conveniently at lunchtime on the East Coast of North America.  I may have to bring my Soviet binoculars to work.

Details here:  http://spaceweather.com/

It has already been a nice day for astronomy here in the wilds of Northern Virgina.  National Public Radio on Sunday alerted me to the fact that Mars is high in the pre-dawn sky.  Our friend Armand e-mailed alerting me to possible clear skies this morning.  The leaves are down and no longer obstructing my view of the Southern sky.  With my six inch telescope I got a very nice view of Jupiter and the four Galilean moons.  We are pretty far away from Mars at this point, so I could see no surface feaures, but it is always nice to see that distinctively red disk. And Venus is poised to disappear behind the moon.  

Good luck with Venus and the Moon.  Please send in reports. 

And speaking of occultations, check this one out (thanks to Farhan for the alert):

The moon passed between Nasa's Deep Space Climate Observatory and the Earth, allowing the satellite to capture this rare image of the moon's far side in full sunlight. We normally don't see this side of the moon. As the moon is tidally locked to the earth and doesn't rotate, we only ever see the one face from the earth. Awesome shot!


  1. I think I see Pink Floyd in that moon shot:-)

  2. Actually the moon does rotate but 1 rotation of the moon itself equals in time to 1 rotation of the moon in orbit around earth. Thus we see the same side of the moon all of the time.


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