31 July 2014

August Opens With an Evening Show

Evening Show
The waning crescent Moon creates a majestic skyscape to open the month of August, shimmering against the dusk sky with the shiny colors of Spica, Mars and Saturn in the path. Each evening the trio of planets and stars will have the Moon in their midst, and the Moon will slip gradually eastward with each successive night.

I enjoy seeing the waxing Moon with its delicate shape and edge-on illumination from the Sun. It's fun to see in a telescope and it always holds the promise of the gentle glow of Earthshine. In the middle of summer, the ecliptic is low on the southern horizon and the Moon slices a gradual slope across the sky.

This view will be enhanced by binoculars, if you have them. You will see deeper into the details of the Moon and into the constellations along the southern horizon with the fringes of the Milky Way in view due south as darkness falls.

Image courtesy of Sky & Telescope.

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