24 September 2014

Red 'Stars' and White Moon

Slender Moon, Mars and more
For the next week, the twilight sky will feature a close alignment of two bright shiny red objects, Mars and Antares, and the slender Moon wending its way through the southwestern sky. The Moon encounters the ringed planet Saturn on Saturday 27th and then brackets the close pairing of orange-red Mars and the red supergiant star Antares in the constellation Scorpius. This first lunar cycle of autumn should start out beautifully with the waxing Moon and some lovely alignments. Look south and west shortly after sunset each evening for the best viewing.

Image courtesy Sky & Telescope.


Mohan said...

Thanks for the useful information on the red planet. Will the comet siding spring be visible through binoculars during its close pass?

The Urban Astronomer said...

hi Mohan - good question. Given the distance to the Earth at the time of the comet fly-by, and the distance from the Sun (meaning, a small tail for the comet), I don't think there will be any way to see the comet except with a very powerful telescope - or from space probes on and orbiting Mars.