Astronomical Observing at the Fishcreek Observing Site
Friday - 11/12/2010  6:30 pm

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Click here for chart of Solar/Lunar/planet availability for tonight. 

Tonight, we'll have a nearly first quarter waxing crescent Moon until it sets at 11:18pm this evening.  This is the perfect phase to see lots of lunar detail on the terminator - the line separating lunar day from night.  After the Moon sets we'll have access to all the faint DSOs (Deep Space Objects).  We have the colorful double stars and open clusters made up of hundreds of stars that will look beautiful; the globular clusters will be fantastic as will the planetary nebula formed by dying stars.  The diffuse nebula and emission nebula where stars are being born will also be visible.  Galaxies will be available to us as well.  Bring binoculars if you have a pair and we'll show you how to find the Andromeda Galaxy with them!  Also, we'll show you how to find the beautiful "Coat Hanger" cluster which is best seen in binoculars.

Click here for a list of DeepSky Objects that will be available to us this session.

How about the planets...which ones can we see tonight? 

    Sun is obviously unavailable to us, it will be night time after all. 
    Mercury isn't currently visible, but will soon be an evening object again (but difficult to see).
    Venus is now visible in the morning before sunrise.
    Earth is what you'll be standing on as you look up. 
    Mars is completely lost in the glare of the evening Sun.
    Jupiter is with us until it sets at 2:27am and is HUGE and BRIGHT!  The GRS will be visible by 9:30pm
    Saturn is now visible in the morning 3 hours before sunrise.
    Uranus is with us until 2:45am and is less than 3.5 to Jupiter's east (upper left)
    Neptune is with us until it sets just after midnight, 27 to the west of Jupiter
 
  Pluto sets at 8:10pm, but so incredibly small and dim that we can't see a thing in our telescopes!  We can show you where it is.  OK, OK...if you want to try to see it, we'll try.  Don't expect to see anything, though!
    Moon is nearly at first quarter and will be with us until it sets at 11:18pm tonight.


Click here for additional information on the planets not listed in the detail below.

Click here for a list of constellations we can see tonight before midnight.

We hope to see you here for a night under the stars - now in our sixteenth year!

- - - - - - Our location - - - - - -

Longitude:

W 81 25' 38.4"
Latitude: N 41 11' 11.1"
Altitude:

 337m

Note: All times are shown in EST (Eastern Daylight Time (UT-5)) as seen from Stow, Ohio
.
 

The following Sun, Moon and planet detail was calculated as it will be
on Friday 11/12/2010 at 6:11:45pm (nautical twilight)

Source: Guide8 software available from www.projectpluto.com

Above Horizon Below Horizon Constellation Mag Rises Sets
  Sun Libra -26.7 07:06 17:12
  Mercury Scorpius -0.4 08:31 17:51
  Venus Virgo -4.4 05:23 15:58
  Mars Ophiucus 1.4 08:56 18:17
Jupiter   Aquarius -2.7 14:44 02:27
  Saturn Virgo 0.9 03:54 15:44
Uranus   Pisces 5.8 14:48 02:45
Neptune   Capricornus 7.9 13:33 00:08
Pluto   Sagittarius 14.3 10:17 20:10
Moon   Capricornus -9.7 12:34 23:18
Click here for information on the planets such as orbital and rotational periods, velocities, distances, etc. not listed in the detail provided below.

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Quick links:
    Inner Solar System     Outer Solar System

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Sun data
 
Rises:

  7:06am

Transits:

12:09pm - Time of highest position in the sky, due South

Sets:

  5:12pm

Constellation:

Libra

Distance:

0.98973541 AU = 148,062,310 km = 92,001,655 miles = 8.24 light-minutes

Magnitude:

-26.7

Apparent size:

32.32 arcminutes in angular diameter

Twilight ends...

Civil:

5:39pm - Sun is   6 below the horizon

Nautical:

6:12pm - Sun is 12 below the horizon

Astronomical:

6:44pm - Sun is 18 below the horizon

Fall began:

at the Autumnal Equinox which occurred on Wednesday Sep 22, 2010 at 11:10pm

Winter begins:

at the Winter Solstice which will occur on Tuesday Dec 21, 2010 at 6:39pm

Next Solar Eclipses in Stow, Ohio:
    Partial eclipse (>80%) on Monday August 21, 2017 2:30pm EDT
    Total eclipse (an amazing sight!) on Monday April 8, 2024 2:15pm EST (3:15pm EDT)

On 11/12/2010 at 6:11:45pm the Sun will be 12 below the west-southwest horizon
Below is the current image of the Sun in heavily-filtered white light updated each morning on the SOHO site.
Notice the graphic below the image that shows the relative size of Jupiter and Earth compared to the Sun:
Never EVER point your telescope at the Sun!!!  Instantaneous and permanent eye damage will result!!!
Very special equipment is required to provide an image like this...don't try this at home.


Click here for additional data on the Sun

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Moon data
 
Rises:

12:34pm

Transits:

  5:53pm (Time of highest position in the sky, due South)

Sets:

11:18pm

Constellation:

Capricornus

Phase:

42.97% illuminated (waxing crescent)

Distance:

0.00265376 AU = 396,997 km = 246,683 miles = 1.33 light-seconds

Magnitude:

-9.7

Apparent size:

30.09 arcminutes in angular diameter

Elongation from Sun:

81.76 (evening sky)

Age:

6d 18h 14m since last New Moon

Prior Phase:

New Moon on Saturday Nov 6, 2010 at 12:52am

Next Phase:

First Quarter on Saturday Nov 13, 2010 at 11:38am

Next Lunar eclipse:

Total eclipse (100%) on Sunday Sept 27, 2015 at 10:10pm EDT


On 11/12/2010 at 6:11:45pm the Moon will be 34 above the south horizon
and will look like this in our telescopes at very low power*
:

*How do we change the "power" (magnification) of our telescopes?
Simple!  By changing the eyepiece to one of a longer or shorter focal length.
If the eyepiece is of shorter focal length, the "power" (magnification) is higher,
If he eyepiece is of longer focal length, the "power" (magnification) is lower.
By how much?  Here's the formula:
Magnification =F focal length of telescope objective lens (or mirror)
focal length of eyepiece being used      

Note: All graphics are correct-image representations.  A telescope will reverse this left-right and possibly invert up-down depending on type of equipment being used.

Click here for additional data on the Moon

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Mercury data
 
Rises:

8:31am

Transits:

1:11pm - Time of highest position in the sky, due South

Sets:

5:51pm

Constellation:

Scorpius

Phase:

90.67% illuminated

Distance:

1.32478646 AU = 198,185,234 km = 123,146,597 miles = 11.03 light-minutes

Magnitude:

-0.4

Apparent size:

5.08 arcseconds in angular diameter

Elongation from Sun:

15.56 (evening sky)

Next maximum elongations...
Evening:

Wednesday, December 1, 2010 (21 27' 14")

Morning:

Sunday, January 9, 2011 (23 16' 55")


On 11/12/2010 at 6:11:45pm Mercury will be 4.5
below the southwest horizon

Click here for additional data on Mercury

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Venus data
 
Rises:

  5:23am

Transits:

10:41am - Time of highest position in the sky, due South

Sets:

  3:58pm

Constellation:

Virgo

Phase:

7.25% illuminated

Distance:

0.29903134 AU = 44,734,452 km = 27,796,700 miles = 2.49 light-minutes

Magnitude:

-4.4 (extremely bright, the brightest thing in the morning sky except for the Moon)

Apparent size:

55.80 arcseconds in angular diameter

Elongation from Sun:

22.22 (morning sky)

Next maximum elongations...
Morning:

Saturday, January 8, 2011 (46 57' 24")

Evening:

Tuesday, March 27, 2012 (46 02' 27")


On 11/12/2010 at 6:11:45pm Venus will be 25.9 below the west horizon

Click here for additional data on Venus

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Mars data
 
Rises:

8:56am

Transits:

1:36pm - Time of highest position in the sky, due South

Sets:

6:17pm

Constellation:

Ophiuchus

Phase:

98.53% illuminated

Distance:

2.34712218 AU = 351,124,481 km = 218,178,640 miles = 19.55 light-minutes

Magnitude:

1.4

Apparent size:

3.99 arcseconds in angular diameter - less than 1/500th the apparent diameter of the Moon!

Elongation from Sun:

20.91 (evening sky)

Dates of Opposition (when Mars is closest to the Earth)

Previous:

Friday Jan 29, 2010 at 2:21pm. Distance: 99,400,435 km. Size: 14.08 arcseconds.

Next:

Saturday Mar 3, 2012 at 3:52pm. Distance: 100,839,728 km. Size: 13.88 arcseconds.

Click here:

For a table of close encounters with Mars from 1969 to 2052


On 11/12/2010 at 6:11:45pm Mars will be 0.2 below the southwest horizon

Question: Will Mars be "as big as a Full Moon on August 27!" ???
 Answer: ABSOLUTELY NOT!!!

Question: Will there be "Two Full Moons in the Sky!" ???
 Answer: ABSOLUTELY NOT!!!

Mars was the closest in recorded history on August 27, but that was only in 2003, not every year!
At that time, it appeared to be 1/75
th the apparent diameter of the Moon!  NOT the "same size as the Full Moon".

Please check these respected sites for their stories on the "Mars hoax" by clicking on the links below:

    Sky & Telescope

   
Snopes.com

    Hoax-slayer

    Universe Today

Click here for additional data on Mars

(back to 'Quick Links')

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Jupiter data
 
Rises:

2:44pm

Transits:

8:36pm - Time of highest position in the sky, due South

Sets:

2:27am - Nov 13

Constellation:

Aquarius

Phase:

99.29% illuminated

Distance:

4.34302269 AU = 649,706,947 km = 403,709,185 miles = 36.17 light-minutes

Magnitude:

-2.7

Apparent size:

45.39 arcseconds in angular diameter

Elongation from Sun:

123.07 (evening sky)

Dates of Opposition (when Jupiter is closest to the Earth)

Previous:

Tuesday Sep 21, 2010 at 7:28am

Next:

Friday Oct 28, 2011 at 9:37pm


Next transit of the Great Red Spot: Friday Nov 12, 2010 at 10:24pm (The Red Spot transits about every 9 hours 56 minutes)
GRS longitude: 156.5
Jupiter moons activity (during darkness):
          None

On 11/12/2010 at 6:11:45pm Jupiter will be 34.1 above the east-southeast horizon
and will look like this with its four moons at high power in our telescopes.
Notice that the GRS (Great Red Spot) is not visible at 6:11:45pm but will be visible by 9:30pm tonight.
Also notice that Jupiter's moons Io and Europa appear to be extremely close together (<5 arcseconds) at 6:11:45pm

Here's another computer-generated graphic of Jupiter.  This is how it will appear 3 hours later than the image above.
Notice how much the moons have moved.  The GRS will be visible on the surface of Jupiter now since it's had time to rotate into view.
        
Note: All graphics are correct-image representations.  A telescope will reverse this left-right and possibly invert up-down depending on type of equipment being used.

Click here for additional data on Jupiter

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Saturn data
 
Rises:

3:54am

Transits:

9:49am - Time of highest position in the sky, due South

Sets:

3:44pm

Constellation:

Virgo

Phase:

99.90% illuminated

Distance:

10.33407594 AU = 1,545,955,756 km = 960,612,383 miles = 1.43 light-hours

Magnitude:

0.9

Apparent size:

16.08 arcseconds in angular diameter

Elongation from Sun:

37.72 (morning sky)

Dates of Opposition (when Saturn is closest to the Earth)

Previous:

Sunday Mar 21, 2010 at 8:28pm

Next:

Sunday Apr 3, 2011 at 7:48pm


On 11/12/2010 at 6:11:45pm Saturn will be 28.3 below the west-northwest horizon

Click here for additional data on Saturn

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Uranus data
 
Rises:

2:48pm

Transits:

8:47pm - Time of highest position in the sky, due South

Sets:

2:45am - Nov 13

Constellation:

Pisces

Phase:

99.96% illuminated

Distance:

19.4873856 AU = 2,915,271,391 km = 1,811,465,683 miles = 2.71 light-hours

Magnitude:

5.8

Apparent size:

3.62 arcseconds in angular diameter

Elongation from Sun:

126.42 (evening sky)

Dates of Opposition (when Uranus is closest to the Earth)

Previous:

Tuesday Sep 21, 2010 at 12:51pm

Next:

Sunday Sep 25, 2011 at 8:07pm


On 11/12/2010 at 6:11:45pm Uranus will be 34.2 above the east-southeast horizon

Click here for additional data on Uranus

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Neptune data
 
Rises:

1:33pm

Transits:

6:51pm - Time of highest position in the sky, due South

Sets:

0:08am - Nov 13

Constellation:

Capricornus

Phase:

99.97% illuminated

Distance:

29.90514419 AU = 4,473,745,893 km = 2,779,856,854 miles = 4.15 light-hours

Magnitude:

7.9

Apparent size:

2.28 arcseconds in angular diameter

Elongation from Sun:

95.45 (evening sky)

Dates of Opposition (when Neptune is closest to the Earth)

Previous:

Friday Aug 20, 2010 at 5:59am

Next:

Monday Aug 22, 2011 at 7:18pm


On 11/12/2010 at 6:11:45pm Neptune will be 34.7 above the south-southeast horizon

Click here for additional data on Neptune

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Pluto (Dwarf Planet aka Asteroid 134340) data
 
Rises:

10:17am

Transits:

  3:13pm - Time of highest position in the sky, due South

Sets:

  8:10pm

Constellation:

Sagittarius

Phase:

99.99% illuminated

Distance:

32.64080518 AU = 4,882,994,953 km = 3,034,152,434 miles = 4.53 light-hours

Magnitude:

14.3

Apparent size:

0.10 arcseconds in angular diameter

Elongation from Sun:

43.42 (evening sky)

Dates of Opposition (when Pluto is closest to the Earth)

Previous:

Friday Jun 25, 2010 at 2:59pm

Next:

Tuesday Jun 28, 2011 at 1:23am


On 11/12/2010 at 6:11:45pm Pluto will be 17.2 above the south-southwest horizon

Click here for additional data on Pluto

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Inner Solar System - the Sun, Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars on 11/12/2010
(Created using Software Bisque's
TheSky software)
Mercury is now visible in the evening and headed toward greatest eastern elongation on Dec 1, 2010
Venus reached inferior conjunction on Oct 29, 2010 and is now visible in the morning before sunrise
Mars is very far away and getting farther and smaller all the time.  It will reach conjunction on Feb 4, 2011 and be 220,700,000 miles away.
(back to 'Quick Links')

Outer Solar System - the Sun, Jupiter, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto on 10/1/2010
(Created using Software Bisque's
TheSky software)
Jupiter reached opposition on Sept 21, 2010
Saturn reached conjunction on Sept 30, 2010 and is now visible in the morning before sunrise
Uranus reached opposition on Sept 21, 2010 and is heading for eastern quadrature on Dec 18, 2010
Neptune will reach eastern quadrature on Nov 18, 2010
Pluto's orbit can be seen to be extremely eccentric (non-circular) and tilted to the plane of the ecliptic.

(back to 'Quick Links')



Click here for event status

Click here for a printer-friendly version of the information on this page.

Click here for general Information you should know about our events - Q&A of Where, When and What.

Click here for satellite passes this evening

Click here for chart of Solar/Lunar/planet availability for tonight. 

Very sincerely yours,
Dave Jessie
"Time spent observing the heavens is not deducted from your life span"

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