In the Sky

Updated 10/12/2018

Note: November’s Astronomy Magazine has a fine article, “November’s 50 Finest Deep-Sky Objects” pp44-53

Mars The planet will still be the big and bright throughout October and November. In November the red planet will start to set around midnight.

Saturn: Still traveling around Sagittarius through the night sky in October and November. It hangs around the Trifid and Lagoon Nebulas and other star clusters in this region.

Jupiter Still is a major feature through October although it begins to get lower in the sky as the month wears on. By November it is only visible shortly after sunset and disappears in the twilight during the second half of November. Mercury is very close to Jupiter in the first two weeks of November.

Venus: Starts to emerge before dawn in November.

Comets: Comet 21P will start to fade away in November. Comet 64P/Swift-Gehrels will be directly overhead near Mirach (Andromeda) and be around tenth magnitude. Later in the year we might have our brightest comet of the year (not saying much), 46P/Wirtanen. It will start to appear in December.

Asteroid Juno will be its brightest in 35 years and will be near Eridanus in November/December

Moon Rise/Set Table for State College for 2018: Click Here

Sunrise/Sunset Times for State College for 2018: Click Here

NEW HORIZONS is sleeping. Follow the progress (ZZZZZZZ) at http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/newhorizons/main/index.html

JUNO is orbiting Jupiter! Follow the NASA link below for updates on the mission:

https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/juno/main/index.html

It’s been said that astronomy is a humbling and, I might add, a character-building experience. Carl Sagan

The hottest planet is not the closest planet to the Sun. Even though Mercury is the closest planet to the Sun, it is not actually the hottest. Mercury does not have any atmosphere meaning that this planet is only hot in the daytime when it is directly facing the Sun. At this stage temperatures can rise to 425°C but at night the planet’s temperature can drop down to a freezing -180°C. Venus is the hottest planet. Its thick clouds trap the Sun’s heat causing Venus to be a sizzling 500°C all of the time!

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