After a harsh winter of spending my evenings hibernating it’s nice to finally get out and enjoy the night sky again without fear of frostbite. Last night was pretty clear over Levittown and tonight has the same potential. If you find yourself under the stars tonight here are a few objects worth checking out.
These images were taken at 10:00 last evening and are representative of what you can expect tonight around the same time. The image above looks towards the east or east-southeast. In the heart of the Virgo constellation you can find the planet Mars. Just two days ago Mars was at opposition, meaning that Earth was between the sun and Mars in its orbit. This is the best time to see our neighboring planet as it hasn’t been this close since 2007. You still have time to enjoy it!
Click any of these images for a galactic-sized version.
Looking towards the southwest you can see the waxing Moon which will be putting on a show of its own during next Tuesday morning’s total lunar eclipse. To the Moon’s right, the next brightest point of light in the pictures above is the planet Jupiter, nestled in the Gemini constellation. In its closeup you can make out the four largest of Jupiter’s 60+ moons; Ganymede, IO, Callisto and Europa. These are also referred to as the Galilean moons and they were the first objects found to orbit something other than the Sun or the Earth.
Keep looking up!