STARzology's New Year Countdown To 2010

Monday, February 16, 2009

Antares Bright Star Of Scorpius - 16FEB2009

February 16, 2009

The Moon passes Antares, the brightest star of Scorpius, in the pre-dawn sky tomorrow. Orange Antares will stand quite close to the left of the Moon at first light.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Aldebaran And Betelgeuse - 15FEB2009

February 15, 2009

Two bright orange stars stand high in the south this evening. Aldebaran is at one point of a V-shaped pattern of stars that outlines the face of Taurus, the bull. And Betelgeuse, to its southeast, is at the top left corner of a rectangle that outlines Orion, the hunter.

Lepus Beneath Orion This Month - 14FEB2009

February 14, 2009

Lepus, the rabbit, hops along beneath the feet of Orion, the hunter, on February evenings. Orion is well up in the south by the middle of the evening, and is quite easy to find. Lepus is much fainter, but its proximity to Orion will help you pick it out.

Spica Is In Virgo Constellation - 13FEB2009

February 13, 2009

Spica, the brightest star of the constellation Virgo, is just a little to the left or upper left of the Moon as they rise in late evening. It represents a stalk of wheat held by a young maiden.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Venus Is At Its Brightest This Year - 12 FEB2009

February 12, 2009

The planet Venus stages its most dazzling show of the year over the next couple of weeks. The "evening star" is high in the west at nightfall and remains in view for several hours. It is brightest for the year, too.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Saturn Can Be Seen Tonight - 11FEB2009

February 11, 2009

The planet Saturn is in good view tonight. It looks like a bright star to the upper left of the Moon as they rise in mid-evening. Its largest moon, Titan, is visible through small telescopes. It looks like a tiny star quite near Saturn.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Watch For Regulus - 10FEB2009

February 10, 2009

The planet Saturn rises to the lower left of the gibbous Moon in mid-evening. The bright star Regulus, the leading light of Leo, the lion, looks on from above.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Penumbral Lunar Eclipse Tonight!!! - 09FEB2009

February 9, 2009

The full Moon undergoes a barely perceptible eclipse tonight. You need to look carefully to notice anything unusual, though. Regulus, the brightest star of Leo, the lion, is a little to the left or lower left of the Moon as they rise.
(For more info on tonite's eclipse click here)

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Get Ready For Lunar Eclipse - 08FEB2009

February 8, 2009

The Moon will undergo a barely perceptible eclipse tomorrow evening (February 9th) as it slips through the faint outer portion of Earth's shadow. Part of the eclipse will be visible across most of the United States, but you will need to look carefully to notice any darkening.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Hydra, The Largest Constellation - 07FEB2009

February 7, 2009

Hydra, the sea serpent, is the largest of the 88 constellations, stretching a quarter of the way around the sky. Its head rises around dark, far to the lower right of the Moon. But it takes about six hours for the rest of its body to climb into view, so its tail doesn't rise until after midnight.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Eridanus "The River" Still In View - 06FEB2009

February 6

Eridanus, the river, twists to the lower right of the bright constellation Orion. Astronomers have been keeping a close eye on its brightest star, and recently found that it is really a binary system. Achernar marks the river's southern end.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Epsilon Eridani Bright Eridanus Star - 05FEB2009

February 5, 2009

Eridanus, the river, curls across the southwest this evening. One of its brightest stars, Epsilon Eridani, is just 10 light-years away. The star has an entourage of planets, one of which may pass near the region around the star that is most comfortable for life.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Aldebaran, The Eye Of Taurus - 04FEB2009

February 4, 2009

A star that huddles close to the Moon tonight shows us what the Sun will look like in the future. Aldebaran, the orange "eye" of Taurus, the bull, is nearing the end of its life, so it has puffed up like a balloon. The Sun will experience this same fate in several billion years.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Eridanus Is The River Of Light - 03FEB2009

February 3, 2009

A faint river of light meanders through the evening sky this month. It's the constellation Eridanus, a collection of stars that winds across a large section of the southwestern sky.

Monday, February 2, 2009

The Dragon, River & Sea Serpent - 02FEB2009

February 2, 2009

Three "squiggly" constellations wiggle across the sky on winter evenings. Draco, the dragon, is in the north, wrapping around the North Star. Eridanus, the river, trickles across the southwest. And Hydra, the sea serpent, slithers into view in the southeast.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Pegasus Flys By Tonite - 01FEB2009

February 1, 2009

Pegasus, the flying horse, stands low in the west as darkness falls and sets by midnight. Look for four moderately bright stars that form the Great Square of Pegasus. The square stands on one point as it drops from view.