Here are some highlights of what to see in the night sky this month…
Sat. September 3 Mercury at greatest western elongation from the Sun… about 18 degrees. This week and next are good opportunities to see the planet before sunrise.
4 Sun. First Quarter Moon at 17:39 UT.
9 Fri. Mercury is less than 1 degree from 1st magnitude star Regulus low in the eastern sky about 45 minutes before sunrise (see image below).
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12 Mon. Full Moon at 9:26 UT (the “Harvest Moon”)
15 Thurs. Jupiter is well above the eastern horizon at midnight, and is easily the brightest object in the night sky all month. The planet is well placed for viewing for the rest of 2011.
20 Tues. Last Quarter Moon at 13:39 UT.
23 Fri. At 9:06 UT, the Sun crosses the celestial equator moving south. This marks the beginning of autumn in the northern hemisphere, and spring in the south.
26 Mon. Uranus at opposition, rising in the constellation Pisces as the Sun sets.
27 Tues. New Moon at 11:08 UT.
28 Wed. Look for Venus and Saturn very low in the western sky 15 minutes after sunset, with a thin crescent Moon nearby.
Here’s a link to full-sky star maps in the night sky this month to help you find your way around…
And if you’re consigned to armchair astronomy this month, here’s a new video by Randy Halverson at DakotaLapse.com called “Tempest Milky Way”. An amazing piece of work…