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Urban Observing – April 2013 April 4, 2013

Posted by aquillam in Astronomy, Urban Observing.
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This month’s post is going to be a bit short and probably full of gramatical errors (darn personal life getting in the way…)

Comet PANSTARRS Will fade to magnitude 6 by mid-month, so it’s not much of an urban object anymore.

Jupiter is joined by Saturn in the evening skies mid month. Saturn opposition is the 28th, at which point it will start rising before sunset.

Look for Mercury very low in the east half an hour before sunrise for the first two weeks of the month.

The Lyrid meteor shower peaks on the 22nd, so if it’s clear that night or the night before or after, you may want to find dark skies. The waxing gibbous moon sets around 4 AM, which happens to coincide with Lyra being nearly overhead. This means the best time to observe it will be basically 4 AM until sunrise.

If you’re up for a challenge, try looking for the very very old moon on April 9 just before sunrise. It’ll be right next to Mercury. Use binoculars. Somewhat easier will be the old Moon half an hour before sunrise on April 8, or the young moon on April 11 at sunset.

There’s a nice conjunction of a crescent moon and Jupiter on April 14. That entire week will be a good one for evening Moon watchers. Morning Moon watchers should really be out the first week of the month. The full moon occurs on the 25th. There is actually a partial/penumbral eclipse that day, but it is not visible from North America.

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