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Star gazers--last look at mars until 2012

From Mercury to Pluto and beyond. . .

Postby greeney2 » Thu Mar 25, 2010 10:00 am

Last Chance to Get a Good Look at Mars Until 2012
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Facebook Twitter Delicious Digg Fark Newsvine Reddit StumbleUpon Technorati Yahoo! Bookmarks .Print .. AFP/USGS/File – A handout image from the US Geological Survey in 2008 shows a mosaic of the Schiaparelli hemisphere of … .Geoff Gaherty
Starry Night Education geoff Gaherty
starry Night Education – 2 hrs 25 mins ago
On Thursday night, March 25, many people may look up at the sky and ask the question, "What's that bright star next to the moon?"

The answer for Thursday night is Mars, but that answer changes night by night as the moon travels along the ecliptic, the path the sun, moon and planets follow across the sky. If you ask the question again on Monday night, March 29, the answer will be the ringed planet Saturn.

Such conjunctions of the moon and planets are regular reminders of how rapidly the moon moves across the sky.

Mars was in opposition to the Sun on Jan. 29, when it appeared 14 arcseconds in diameter, 1/120 of the diameter of the moon. Two months later, it is much farther away, and has shrunk to only 10 arcseconds in diameter.

This will be your last chance to get a good look at Mars until it approaches the Earth again in 2012 [see more Mars photos].

The sky these spring evenings presents a striking contrast between its western half, filled with the bright stars and constellations of winter, and its eastern half, with Regulus the only bright star. Mars sits in solitary splendor in Cancer, one of the most insignificant zodiac constellations, just above the plane of the Milky Way.

But there is much lurking beyond the dim stars of spring, for we are entering the realm of the galaxies. The constellation Leo alone contains five of the brightest galaxies in Charles Messier's famous 18th century catalog of deep sky objects.

When we look towards Leo, we are looking above the plane of our Milky Way galaxy at the depths of intergalactic space, unhindered by the clouds of dust and gas which fill our galaxy.
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Postby chiselray » Wed Apr 21, 2010 6:53 pm

2012..just keeps popping up..

when the shift happens ...the new age of consciousness will take effect,the end is really evolution ...
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Postby bionic » Wed Apr 21, 2010 8:21 pm

Willie Wonka quotes..
What is this Wonka, some kind of funhouse?
Why? Are you having fun?
A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men.
We are the music makers, we are the dreamers of dreams
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Postby chiselray » Wed Apr 21, 2010 8:34 pm

just keep counting the days...not many left now bionic
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Postby vulcan6gun » Fri Apr 30, 2010 8:58 pm

Y'all keep it up, and I *will* re-launch my Website. There's only a few of us that were selling deeds to Mars, and only one (me) that catalogued all the known outer Moons, to offer them for sale as well. 8-)

Current (tonight) distance to Mars: 1.1973x10^8 miles, approximately. Mars will continue to 'recede' for a bit, its Solar orbit is about 780 Earth days. :geek:

Mars' closest approach to date: about 5.4 x 10^7 miles, August, 2003; through the eyepiece of a 75x telescope, it appeared nearly as large as the unmagnified moon, which sparked emails galore about 'Mars appearing as large as the moon this August (2004-5-6-7, etc)'. :geek: :roll:

Next 'close' event: roughly 5.7 x 10^7 miles, 2018 :geek:

Next 'close' event after that: about 5.6 x 10^7 miles, 2035; by which time I will probably be senile or dead, and won't care if I was off by months or years. :ugeek: :P

My favorite Martian: Green, with a white 'm' on its chest, with or without a peanut core. 'There's something about the green ones.' Nom, nom, nom!


"Would you like your scientific research grilled, or roasted?"--Unknown Japanese whaler
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