Waxing Gibbous Moon Passes Regulus

   Saturday and Sunday May 11-12th the waxing gibbous Moon will pass by the star Regulus, the ‘heart’ of Leo the Lion.

   
   
   

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Waxing Crescent Moon Near Beehive Cluster

   Friday evening May 10th the 6-day old waxing crescent Moon will be ‘on top’ of the open star cluster, M-44, or the Beehive Cluster. This should make for a great viewing sight through the field of view of binoculars or telescope, and certainly would make for a striking astrophoto.

   
   
   

Click here to go to the Qué tal in the Current Skies web site for monthly observing information, or here to return to bobs-spaces.


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Waxing Crescent Moon and the Twins

   Thursday evening May 9th the 5-day old waxing crescent Moon will be about 4-5o from the star Pollux, one of the two Gemini ‘Twin’ Stars. The Moon and Pollux will fit within the field of view of 7×50 binoculars however the other ‘Twin’ star Castor is out of that field of view.

   
   
   

Click here to go to the Qué tal in the Current Skies web site for monthly observing information, or here to return to bobs-spaces.


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Waxing Crescent Moon Near Aldebaran

   Monday evening May 6th the 2-day old waxing crescent Moon will be about 1-2o from the ‘angry red eye’ of Taurus the Bull, the reddish star Aldebaran. Both will be low above the western horizon. The Moon will be close enough to Aldebaran and the v-shaped asterism of the open star cluster the Hyades such that they will fit within the field of view of 7×50 binoculars.,

   
   
   

Click here to go to the Qué tal in the Current Skies web site for monthly observing information, or here to return to bobs-spaces.


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Mars-Saturn at Heliocentric Opposition

   Friday May 3rd two of the outer planets, Mars and Saturn, will have reached a point in their respective orbits where they are on opposite sides of the Sun. This is known as heliocentric opposition.

   
   
   

Click here to go to the Qué tal in the Current Skies web site for monthly observing information, or here to return to bobs-spaces.


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Waning Crescent Moon – Venus Conjunction

   Wednesday and Thursday mornings, May 1st and 2nd the 26 to 27-day old thin waning crescent Moon will pass by the inner planet Venus coming the closest on the 27th when the two will be separated by about 3-4o. A day later, Friday, the very thin waning crescent Moon will be near Mercury and the outer planet Uranus, but the Sun will be less than 45 minutes behind them – meaning the sky may be too bright to see the Moon or Mercury.
   Further to the west the outer planets Saturn and Jupiter are visible in the area around Sagittarius and Scorpius. Even a bit further west is the closest Dwarf Planet to the Earth, former asteroid Ceres.


   
   
   

Click here to go to the Qué tal in the Current Skies web site for monthly observing information, or here to return to bobs-spaces.


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April Moon at 2nd Apogee

   Our Moon reaches apogee, (greatest distance from Earth), on Sunday April 28th. At that time the Moon will more or less be at a distance of 31.85 Earth diameters 251,392 miles (404,577 km) from the Earth.

Does our Moon actually go around the Earth? From our perspective on the Earth the Moon appears to circle around the Earth. However, in reality, the Moon orbits the Sun together with the Earth*

   On the day of the apogee the 24-day old waning crescent Moon will be over the southeastern horizon 1-2 hours before sunrise local time.

*Click here to read my 2006 Scope on the Sky column “The Real Shape of the Moon’s Orbit”. (PDF)

Read this very informative article about the Earth-Moon system and their orbital motions, written by Joe Hanson. “Do We Orbit the Moon?”


Click here to go to the Qué tal in the Current Skies web site for monthly observing information, or here to return to bobs-spaces.


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