This Week’s Sky at a Look, June 14 – 22

June 14, 2019 - Comment

  The waxing gibbous Moon passes Antares and Jupiter on its method to full, forming a pleasant triangle with them on the 15th. Friday, June 14 • Look far decrease left of the Moon in late twilight and after darkish for Antares and Jupiter, as proven right here. • The Massive Dipper, excessive within the


Moon, Jupiter, Antares June 14-16, 2019

The waxing gibbous Moon passes Antares and Jupiter on its method to full, forming a pleasant triangle with them on the 15th.

Friday, June 14

• Look far decrease left of the Moon in late twilight and after darkish for Antares and Jupiter, as proven right here.

• The Massive Dipper, excessive within the northwest, now hangs straight down by its deal with as the celebs come out.

Saturday, June 15

• The brilliant Moon kinds a not-quite-equilateral triangle with Jupiter to its decrease left and Antares to its decrease proper, as proven right here. Assume picture alternative. The triangle is 10° from finish to finish, so use a reasonably lengthy lens. And even attempt zooming in with a telephone digicam braced rock-steady.

Sunday, June 16

• Full “Honey Moon” tonight (actual at Four:31 a.m. Monday morning EDT). By no coincidence the Moon shines close to Jupiter, which was at opposition simply six days in the past. “Full” and “at opposition” each imply “within the course reverse the Solar” as seen from Earth.

Jupiter, nonetheless, is at the moment 1,670 occasions farther now, which is why it appears like a tiny dot in comparison with the Moon — despite the fact that it is really 40 occasions bigger in diameter.

Including to the panorama are, to their proper, fainter Antares and different stars of higher Scorpius.

Moon and Saturn, June 17-18, 2019

After which on the 18th the Moon pairs up with Saturn. (The Moon in these scenes is at all times proven about 3 times its precise obvious measurement.)

Monday, June 17

• The Moon shines now between Jupiter and Saturn, nearer to the latter. Jupiter is higher proper of the Moon after darkish. Saturn is to the Moon’s decrease left, as seen right here.

Tuesday, June 18

• As twilight fades, use binoculars to attempt catching Mercury and Mars simply ½° aside low within the west-northwest. Mercury is by far the brighter of the 2. Mars is definitely fainter now than Pollux and Castor, which glimmer a little bit greater than a binocular area of view to their higher proper.

• On the alternative aspect of the sky after darkish, the waning gibbous Moon shines with Saturn, which is three,450 occasions farther away.

Wednesday, June 19

• Right here it’s two days from official summer time. However as twilight fades, look very low within the north-northwest for wintry Capella very out of season. The farther north you might be, the upper it should seem. It’s possible you’ll want binoculars. If you happen to’re as far north as Montreal or a Portland (both Oregon or Maine!), Capella is definitely circumpolar.

Thursday, June 20

• After darkish Vega is the brightest star shining very excessive within the east. Barely decrease left of it’s 4th-magnitude Epsilon Lyrae, the Double-Double. Epsilon kinds one nook of a roughly equilateral triangle with Vega and Zeta Lyrae. The triangle is lower than 2° on a aspect, hardly the width of your thumb at arm’s size.

Binoculars simply resolve Epsilon. And a Four-inch telescope at 100× or extra ought to resolve every of Epsilon’s huge parts into a good pair.

Zeta Lyrae can be a double star for binoculars; a lot more durable, however plainly resolved in any telescope.

Delta Lyrae, a little bit beneath Zeta, is a a lot wider and simpler pair, tinted reddish orange and blue.

Friday, June 21

• The solstice arrives at 11:54 a.m. EDT, when the Solar is farthest north for the yr and begins its six-month return southward. Official summer time begins within the Northern Hemisphere, winter within the Southern Hemisphere. For us northerners, that is the yr’s longest day and shortest evening.

It is also the day when (within the north temperate latitudes) the noon Solar passes the closest it ever can to being straight overhead, and your shadow turns into is the shortest it could actually ever be. This occurs at native obvious photo voltaic midday, which might be reasonably far faraway from midday by your civil (clock) time.

And if in case you have west-northwest horizon (in mid-northern latitudes), mark very exactly the place the Solar units. In just a few days you need to be capable of detect that it is once more beginning to set a little bit south of that time.

• Jupiter’s Nice Pink Spot ought to transit the planet’s central meridian (the road from pole to pole down the middle of the planet’s disk) round 1:21 a.m. EDT tonight; 12:21 a.m. CDT. In the meantime Europa, the smallest of Jupiter’s Galilean moons, crosses the planet’s disk tonight from 11:32 p.m. to 1:57 a.m. EDT, adopted intently by its tiny black shadow from 12:04 to 2:32 a.m. EDT.

For timetables of all of the Pink Spot’s transits this month and all of the fascinating phenomena of Jupiter’s moons, see the June Sky & Telescope, web page 50.

Saturday, June 22

• Leo the Lion is a constellation of late winter and spring. However he is not gone but. As twilight ends look due west, reasonably low, for Regulus, his brightest and now lowest star: the forefoot of the Lion stick determine. The Sickle of Leo extends higher proper from Regulus. The remainder of the Lion’s constellation determine extends for nearly three fist-widths to the higher left, to his tail star Denebola, the very best. He is treading all the way down to the western horizon.


Need to change into a greater astronomer? Study your manner across the constellations. They’re the important thing to finding all the things fainter and deeper to hunt with binoculars or a telescope.

That is an outside nature pastime. For an easy-to-use constellation information masking the entire night sky, use the massive month-to-month map within the middle of every concern of Sky & Telescope, the important information to astronomy.

Jumbo Pocket Sky Atlas cover

The Pocket Sky Atlas plots 30,796 stars to magnitude 7.6, and lots of of telescopic galaxies, star clusters, and nebulae amongst them. Proven above is the Jumbo Version for simpler studying within the evening. Pattern chart.

When you get a telescope, to place it to good use you will want an in depth, large-scale sky atlas (set of charts). The fundamental commonplace is the Pocket Sky Atlas (in both the unique or Jumbo Version), which exhibits stars to magnitude 7.6.

Subsequent up is the bigger and deeper Sky Atlas, plotting stars to magnitude eight.5; almost 3 times as many. The following up, as soon as you already know your manner round, are the even bigger Interstellarum atlas (stars to magnitude 9.5) and Uranometria (stars to magnitude 9.75). And skim how you can use sky charts with a telescope.

You will additionally need a good deep-sky guidebook, comparable to Sue French’s Deep-Sky Wonders assortment (which incorporates its personal charts), Sky Atlas Companion by Robust and Sinnott, or the larger Evening Sky Observer’s Information by Kepple and Sanner.

Can a computerized telescope exchange charts? Not for novices, I do not suppose, and never on mounts and tripods which can be lower than top-quality mechanically (that means heavy and costly). And as Terence Dickinson and Alan Dyer say of their Yard Astronomer’s Information, “A full appreciation of the universe can’t come with out creating the abilities to seek out issues within the sky and understanding how the sky works. This information comes solely by spending time beneath the celebs with star maps in hand.”

Jupiter with Great Red Spot on May 12, 2019

Jupiter’s Nice Pink Spot, imaged by Christopher Go on Might 12th earlier than it began to shed. South is up. “Seeing was good this morning,” Go writes. “The GRS is nicely resolved with many options seen inside it.” Darkish materials absolutely outlined the Pink Spot Hole and the spot itself and prolonged in two traces all the best way across the previous limb. However then. . .

Jupiter on May 22, 2019

. . .by Might 22nd the darkish rim made contact with the Pink Spot and appeared to be drawing a few of it off. Word the spot’s unprecedented lumpy distortion on its left (previous; celestial west) aspect. South is up.

Jupiter with flaking Red Spot, May 27, 2019

By the 27th, the crimson flake on the left had indifferent and moved downstream (left), whereas an enormous new one had fashioned on the fitting (following). Christopher Go picture.

Jupiter with Red Spot on May 29, 2019

Two days afterward Might 29th, the brand new blob on the Pink Spot’s following edge appeared to have shrunk and moved a little bit southward (up). And a little bit spherical blob was embedded within the spot’s reverse aspect. Christopher Go picture.

Jupiter with Red Spot, May 31, 2019

Two extra days (Might 31st) and the scene had modified once more. Writes Go, “The flake materials has now emerged on the SE [upper left] of the GRS as predicted.”

Jupiter and Red Spot, June 4, 2019

By June 4th the crimson flake materials was extra far-flung, and the spot itself regarded extra regular. Clyde Foster picture.

Mercury and Mars move one another very low in night twilight. Search for them within the west-northwest about 40 to 60 minutes after sundown. Convey binoculars. Mercury is by far the brighter of the 2, fading from magnitude –zero.1 to +zero.Four this week. Mars is lower than an eighth as brilliant at magnitude +1.eight.

On June 14th you will discover Mars 2½° to Mercury’s higher left. They seem closest, a mere ½° aside or much less, on the June 17th and 18th. After that, Mars strikes away to Mercury’s decrease proper.

Pollux and Castor (magnitudes +1.2 and +1.6) twinkle weakly above or to the higher proper of them.

Venus (magnitude –three.eight) may be very low within the daybreak. About 20 minutes earlier than dawn, scan for it with binoculars a little bit above the east-northeast horizon.

Jupiter (magnitude –2.6, in southern Ophiuchus) is simply previous its June 10th opposition. It glares within the southeast by late twilight. Antares, a lot fainter at magnitude, twinkles 10° to its proper. Jupiter is highest within the south by midnight or 1 a.m. daylight saving time, with orange Antares now to its decrease proper.

In a telescope Jupiter is 46 arcseconds huge. See Bob King’s Jupiter Is Excellent at Opposition. And, modifications proceed in and round Jupiter’s Nice Pink Spot.

Saturn (magnitude +zero.2, in Sagittarius) rises by the tip of twilight. It is the regular, pale yellowish “star” 30° east of Jupiter. Saturn’s opposition comes on July ninth.

Uranus remains to be very low simply earlier than daybreak.

Neptune (magnitude 7.9, in Aquarius) is nicely up within the southeast simply earlier than daybreak begins, decrease proper of the Nice Sq. of Pegasus. Finder chart.


All descriptions that relate to your horizon — together with the phrases up, down, proper, and left — are written for the world’s mid-northern latitudes. Descriptions that additionally depend upon longitude (primarily Moon positions) are for North America.

Japanese Daylight Time (EDT) is Common Time (UT, UTC, GMT, or Z time) minus Four hours.


Audio sky tour. Out beneath the night sky together with your earbuds in place, take heed to Kelly Beatty’s month-to-month podcast tour of the heavens above. It is free.


“This journey is made doable by generations of searchers strictly adhering to a easy algorithm. Check concepts by experiments and observations. Construct on these concepts that move the take a look at. Reject those that fail. Observe the proof wherever it leads, and query all the things. Settle for these phrases, and the cosmos is yours.”
— Neil deGrasse Tyson, 2014



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