Photo Op July 15 (see blog entry)

By: LowerCal , 10:40 PM GMT on February 26, 2012

Share this Blog
10
+

CURRENT MOON

moon phases

CURRENT PLANETS and brilliant stars in early July. Directions and times are for the northern subtropics and vary somewhat for other latitudes.
• Bright & golden Mercury is close to the western horizon at dusk, sets WNW after dark.
• Bright & orange Mars is SW at dusk, sets west near midnight.
• Bright & yellowish Saturn is SSW at dusk, sets west after midnight and is
accompanied very closely by the bright and blueish star Spica.
• Very brilliant off-white Jupiter rises ENE predawn, is low east late dawn.
• Extremely brilliant white Venus rises ENE predawn, is low east before sunrise and is
accompanied very closely by the bright and orange star Aldebaran.
• Brilliant & blueish star Sirius will rise before the Sun late July.
• Brilliant white star Canopus will peek above the horizon before the Sun around late August.


Scroll past the links below to find special events for current and future dates.
Scroll farther to find past events.


***** Links *****

Today - SpaceWeather.com
also EarthSky,
Astronomy Picture of the Day,
Lunar Photo of the Day,
365 Days of Astronomy
& Bad Astronomy | Discover Magazine
This Week - SkyandTelescope.com - This Week's Sky at a Glance
also Jack Horkheimer - Star Gazer, Current Scripts
This Month - SkyandTelescope.com - Sky Tour Podcasts
also HubbleSite - Tonight's Sky: Your guide to constellations, deep sky objects, planets, and events
Anytime - Stellarium (free planetarium for your computer)
also Sky & Telescope Interactive Sky Chart (online planetarium)

Visible Satellites:
Simplest - Satellite Flybys by SpaceweatherPhone.com
More satellites and more info - Heavens-Above.com.

Launches:
Spaceflight Now - Worldwide Launch Schedule
also Vandenberg AFB Launch Schedule
& Wallops Flight Facility Launch Webcast & Blog
Reentries - Center for Orbital and Reentry Debris Studies - Upcoming & Recent Reentries

Live Aurora Cams:
Sodankyla, Finland,
Kiruna, Sweden,
Jokkmokk, Sweden (cam 4),
Jokkmokk, Sweden (cam 5),
Abisko, Sweden,
Reykiavik, Iceland,
Yellowknife, Canada (click on CONNECT AURORAMAX LIVE),
& Poker Flat, Alaska


Most events described below can be viewed with your eyes alone.
Occasionally simple binoculars will improve the view and that will be noted.


***** Current & Future Events *****

Photo Op - Crescent & Morning "Stars"

Image created with Stellarium, a free download.

July 15 before Dawn
ENE before dawn the bright & orange star Aldebaran and the ">" shaped Hyades star cluster will be visible close to extremely brilliant white planet Venus. The tiny dipper shaped Pleiades star cluster will be visible well above very brilliant off-white Jupiter.

Even in the very bright dawn shortly before sunrise the thin crescent moon, Venus and Jupiter will still be visible.


Events earlier than those listed below will be found in previous blog entries.

***** Past Events *****

Moon Rides with Jupiter (& Jupiter's Moons)

WunderPhoto: Jupiter, Venus and the crescent moon....Day 2 by rds817 — Sunday February 26, 2012

February 26 after Sunset
A crescent moon will travel beside the brilliant off-white planet Jupiter. Below them is the brilliant white planet Venus. Jupiter and Venus will appear very close March 12 & 13.

As the sky darkens through binoculars as many as four of Jupiter's largest moons can be seen.

Interactive Animation of Jupiter's Moons
- Current, Past and Future


Jupiter & Venus' Cozy Evenings

WunderPhoto: Jupiter & Venus from the Front Yard by phnielsen — Monday March 12, 2012

March 12 & 13 after Sunset
Brilliant off-white planet Jupiter travels close to even more brilliant white planet Venus.

As the sky darkens through binoculars as many as four of Jupiter's largest moons can be seen.

Interactive Animation of Jupiter's Moons
- Current, Past and Future


Virginia Nightlight Cloud Launches

Milky white tracer clouds from a prior mission.
Credit: Miguel Larsen/Clemson Univ

Mission: Anomalous Transport Rocket Experiment (ATREX)
Launch Vehicle: Terrier-Improved Malemute
Launch from Wallops Flight Facility, Virgina
March 23
12:00-3:00am EDT
March 25
morning

March 27
12:00-5:00am EDT
2:00-5:00am EDT


".... where the rockets may be visible while the motors are burning ...."
Credit: NASA/Wallops


".... the projected area in which the chemical tracers released from the rockets may be visible ...."
Credit: NASA/Wallops

The Anomalous Transport Rocket Experiment (ATREX) will study the 200-300mph ultra-high level jet stream at the edge of space 60-65 miles above the Earth's surface. For details on the mission see
NASA - NASA Jet Stream Study Will Light up The Night Sky.


Crescent & Planets PhotoOps
(and beautiful binocular & naked eye views too.)

March 24-27 after Sunset
There will be good photo opportunities with the crescent moon in the western sky. (See the series of images just below.) Total darkness comes about 1½ hours after sunset. Between half an hour to an hour after sunset are some nice twilight skies. You can step outside any evening starting now, see the brilliant planets Jupiter and Venus, get an idea of lighting at various times and take some test shots.

After dark the two star clusters closest to Earth are easily seen above Jupiter and Venus. To the naked eye the Pleiades cluster appears as a tiny white dipper shaped pattern of stars standing above brilliant white Venus. The Hyades cluster appears farther above as a larger V-shaped pattern of stars with the bright and orangeish star Aldebaran at one corner. Binocular views of these star clusters are spectacular.

Crescent Moon, Venus & Jupiter - March 24, 2012 45 min. after Sunset


Crescent Moon, Venus & Jupiter - March 25, 2012 45 min. after Sunset


Crescent Moon, Venus & Jupiter - March 26, 2012 45 min. after Sunset


Crescent Moon, Venus & Jupiter - March 27, 2012 45 min. after Sunset

Images created with Stellarium, a free download.


Vandenberg Delta IV Launch

Photo credit: USAF/Airman 1st Class Lael Huss

Mission: National Reconnaissance Office Launch 25 (NROL-25)
Launch Vehicle: Delta IV Medium+ (5,2)
Launch from Vandenberg AFB, California
March 29
2230-(March 30)0015 GMT
6:30-8:15pm EDT
3:30-5:15pm PDT (local time).
March 30
2238-(March 31)0023 GMT
6:38-8:23pm EDT
3:38-5:23pm PDT (local time).
April 2
2304-? GMT
7:04pm-? EDT
4:04pm-? PDT (local time).

April 3
2312-? GMT
7:12pm-? EDT
4:12pm-? PDT (local time).

The smoke column produced by two solid rocket boosters will be easily visible for this afternoon launch.

Launch status updates are at
Spaceflight Now | Tracking Station | Worldwide launch schedule.

More details and updates appear on a launch blog at
Spaceflight Now | Delta Launch Report | Mission Status Center.

You can find a live launch webcast at
United Launch Alliance.


Annular Solar Eclipse

Photo Credit: sancho_panza
May 20
Partial begins: 2056 GMT
Annular begins: 2206 GMT
May 21
Annular ending: 0139 GMT
Partial ending: 0249 GMT

A VERY IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT VIEWING THE ECLIPSE:
"....no matter what, do not use "filters" such as smoked glass, stacked sunglasses, polarized filters, camera filters, candy wrappers, or compact discs. They might reduce the Sun's glare, but enough harmful radiation can sneak through to damage your eyes. Only use materials specifically manufactured for safe solar viewing, or #14 arcwelders glass."

That quote is from Safely View the Upcoming Eclipse and Transit - Observing Highlights - SkyandTelescope.com which gives directions for additional methods for viewing the Sun such as projecting an image, etc.


Map credit: Eclipse Predictions by Fred Espenak, NASA's GSFC
For a explanation of all the lines and terms on the map see
NASA - Key to Solar Eclipse Maps.

See a zoomable and clickable NASA - Annular Solar Eclipse Map that will show specific times and amount of Sun eclipsed for any locations you select.

Some phase of the eclipse will be visible for most of North America before or during sunset. The path of annularity (where the Sun will appear as a "ring of fire" arround the Moon) is at least 150 miles wide. The path of annularity makes landfall at the California-Oregon border and continues into NW Texas. See the general visibility map for North America.


Cape Canaveral Falcon 9 Launch

Photo credit: NASA/Tony Gray and Kevin O'Connell

Mission: Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) Demo Flight 2
Spacecraft: Dragon C2+
Launch Vehicle: Falcon 9
Launch from Cape Canaveral AFS, Florida
May 19
0855 GMT
4:55am EDT (local time)
1:55am PDT.
no earlier than (NET)

May 22
0744 GMT
3:44am EDT (local time)
12:44am PDT.

Berthing at the International Space Station (ISS)
May 22
1505 GMT
11:05am EDT
8:05am PDT.

Departure from ISS
May 31
1000 GMT
6:00am EDT
3:00am PDT

Deorbit burn
May 31
1451 GMT
10:51am EDT
7:51am PDT

Splashdown west of central Baja California
May 31
1542 GMT
11:42am EDT
8:42am PDT (local time)

If all the ambitious mission goals are met the SpaceX Dragon capsule will be the first private commercial spacecraft to deliver cargo to the International Space Station (ISS) and it will also return cargo to Earth.

Launch status updates are at
Spaceflight Now | Tracking Station | Worldwide launch schedule.

More details and updates appear on a launch blog at
Spaceflight Now | Dragon Mission Report | Mission Status Center.

You can find a live pre-launch and launch broadcasts at
NASA TV via cable, satellite or internet and
SpaceX.


Partial Lunar Eclipse

WunderPhoto: Lunar Eclipse by jajayy

June 4
Partial eclipse begins 1000 GMT
Partial eclipse ending 1206 GMT


Map credit: F. Espenak, NASA’s GSFC

The partial lunar eclipse will be in progress at moonset/sunrise for all but the most eastern and northern area of the Americas. The entire eclipse sequence will be visible from nearly all the Pacific Ocean including eastern Australia and eastern Indonesia. The partial lunar eclipse will be significantly in progress at moonsrise/sunset for the most eastern areas of the Asia.


Transit of Venus (across the Sun)

Photo credit: Jan Herold

June 5/6
First contact
2209 GMT
6:09 EDT
3:09 PDT

Final contact
0449 GMT


Map credit: Fred Espenak, NASAs GSFC

The transit of Venus will be visible on June 5 until sunset for the 48 states. Alaska and Hawaii will be able to observe the entire transit. Starting west of the International Date Line (IDL) the transit will be visible on June 6. Farther west the transit will be in progress at sunrise.

You can find timetables for major cities at 2012 Transit of Venus - Cities.

A VERY IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT VIEWING THE TRANSIT:
"....no matter what, do not use "filters" such as smoked glass, stacked sunglasses, polarized filters, camera filters, candy wrappers, or compact discs. They might reduce the Sun's glare, but enough harmful radiation can sneak through to damage your eyes. Only use materials specifically manufactured for safe solar viewing, or #14 arcwelders glass."

That quote is from Safely View the Upcoming Eclipse and Transit - Observing Highlights - SkyandTelescope.com which gives directions for additional methods for viewing the Sun such as projecting an image, etc.

I was able to buy a pair of eclipse shades like this...

... for $1 at a local camera & telescope store.


JPL Open House


June 9 & 10
9AM - 4PM

The annual Open House at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., welcomes over 38,000 visitors. This year's theme is "Great Journeys," inviting visitors to share in the wonders of space through high-definition and 3-D videos, live demonstrations, interactions with scientists and engineers, and a first look at JPL's new Earth Science Center.

Find directions and other vital info at Open House - NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.


Cape Canaveral Atlas V Launch

Image credit: NASA/JPL/KSC/Lockheed Martin Space Systems

Mission: National Reconnaissance Office Launch 38 (NROL-38)
Launch Vehicle: Atlas V 401
Launch from Cape Canaveral AFS, Florida
June 20
1228-1327 GMT
8:28-9:27am EDT (local time)
5:28-6:27am PDT.

With no smoke producing solid rocket boosters the launch vehicle will rise on a bright flame with a long barely visible tail. A condensation trail may form at higher altitude.

You can find status updates and launch coverage at
Spaceflight Now | Atlas Launch Report | Mission Status Center.

You can find more information and a live webcast starting a 8:08am EDT on launch day at
United Launch Alliance.


Skinny Moon & Mercury - 20 June 20 min. after Sunset looking WNW

Image created with Stellarium, a free download.

Binoculars can help you find both or just offer another interesting view if you can find them with your eyes alone.


Skinny Moon & Planet Mercury - 21 June 20 min. after Sunset looking WNW

Image created with Stellarium, a free download.

The crescent moon should be more obvious this evening but binoculars still might be needed find Mercury 20 minutes after sunset. Binoculars will also give an improved view of the craters and mountains in the Moon's thin crescent.

By about 45 minutes after sunset Mercury should be obvious to the right of the thin crescent. The pair will make a nice photo op against a twilight sky with silhouettes on the horizon below.


Cape Canaveral Delta IV Launch

Image credit: US Air Force

Mission: National Reconnaissance Office Launch 15 (NROL-15)
Launch Vehicle: Delta IV Heavy
Launch from Cape Canaveral AFS, Florida
June 28
Target
1016 GMT
6:16am EDT (local time)
3:16am PDT,

June 29
Target
1013 GMT
6:13am EDT (local time)
3:13am PDT,

Window?
0930-1430 GMT
5:30-10:30am EDT (local time)
2:30-7:30am PDT.

The beginning of the previously announced launch window is early dawn. The Delta IV Heavy configuration uses two additional first stage engines as strap on boosters. The three RS-68 liquid hydrogen-oxygen engines create long orange flames and water vapor exhaust that shows up as a heavy condensation trail.

The announced target time of launch is about 10 minutes before sunrise. This could result in a condensation trail that rises from low light into bright and reddish sunrise colors - a nice photo op.

You can find status updates and launch coverage at
Spaceflight Now | Delta Launch Report | Mission Status Center.

You can find more information and a live webcast on launch day at
United Launch Alliance.


Past 24 Hours Visitors
web counterVisitor Map
Create your own visitor map!

All Time Visitors
web counterVisitor Map
Create your own visitor map!

Jupiter, Venus and the crescent moon (rds817)
Jupiter, Venus and the crescent moon
Important Sunspot Up Date 3/11/12 (Ralfo)
Up Date Photo 3/11/12 . VERY IMPORTANT NEWS. Photo taken at 10:05A.M. What is going on now is the #1 event of importance regarding the Sun and Earths Weather and conditions for now and future. I am and have been entering Photos to advise. Below is a copy of updates and interest info! Sunspots - News Results Solar Storms Continue, Northern Lights Increase WebProNews - Mar 09 08:55am Earth Braces for Geomagnetic Storming After More Solar FlaresPC Magazine - Mar 10 02:48pm Biggest solar storms.
Important Sunspot Up Date 3/11/12
()
Ice and light (Altred)
Ice and light
MidnightDance! (katy99780)
Dynamic, bright, and moving 'at the speed of light.' Constant motion, fast as a shiver in the cold, shimmering in the night sky. 18 degrees below zero Fahrenheit, wee hours this morning.
MidnightDance!
Planets at Night (SBKaren)
I believe these are Jupiter (below) and Venus (above). Just shot this photo without taking any kind of care. I wasn't even sure if they would turn out.
Planets at Night
Red and green (Altred)
Red and green
()
()
Early Evening Conjunction (CameraGuy)
This evening's beautiful conjunction of the Moon, Venus, Jupiter, and the Pleiades.
Early Evening Conjunction
Moon & planets form Tringle while Corn Takes Over. (Skyepony)
All hail the corn, it's 8' high & the planets & moon have aligned to form a triangle, with Jupiter sitting with the moon & Venus above. Got 0.21" of rain, followed by perfect weather.
Moon & planets form Tringle while Corn Takes Over.
()
ATREX Misson (Maciejewski)
WALLOPS ISLAND, VA – NASA successfully launched five suborbital sounding rockets this morning from its Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia as part of a study of the upper level jet stream. The first rocket was launched at 4:58 a.m. EDT and each subsequent rocket was launched 80 seconds apart. Each of the rockets released a chemical tracer that created milky, white clouds at the edge of space.
ATREX Misson
Jupiter, Moon and Venus (CecileWNC)
Jupiter, Moon and Venus
Coastal Flooding (SunsetSailor)
This is the road to my house. We only get this kind of flooding when hurricanes are off shore. Tides were 4-6 ft above normal this evening due to the gravitational pull of the moon.
Coastal Flooding
Fireflies (PruzenskiPhotos)
A sure sign that summer is on it's way. A view from Canadice Lake early this morning revealed fireflies dancing infront of the Milky Way.
Fireflies
Oregon Annular (silverbeaver59)
Oregon Annular
2 hours of the annular eclipse of the sun (redtim)
from Pyramid Lake, NV
2 hours of the annular eclipse of the sun
Solar Sunset Eclipse (LianesLightroom)
View of the partial solar eclipse from the Manhattan Beach Pier. Edited using special filters from NIK Software.
Solar Sunset Eclipse
Annular Eclipse Sunset over Mt. Taylor (witokazu)
Absolutely awesome event. Shot from Albuquerque, NM, USA on I-40 Frontage Rd on MM-245. Nikon D300 and 50mm (non-DX) @ f/5.6 at 3-min intervals centered at mid-annularity.
Annular Eclipse Sunset over Mt. Taylor
Sunset Eclipse (Mousecrafter)
2012 Solar eclipse sunset overlooking Lake Ray Hubbard with clouds.
Sunset Eclipse
Moon Eclipse 3 (gilg72)
Partial Eclipse. Was cloudy all the way thru. Had to wait for clouds to move enough for photos. Different settings etc.
Moon Eclipse 3
walkabout (cyril8)
partial eclipse still visible as the full moon sets
walkabout
VENUS TRANSIT & MANY SUNSPOTS (Ralfo)
Cloudy most of the day but got a break in between clouds. Took this picture at 6:37P.M. with many Sunspots. One of the rarest solar system events (only seven have happened since Galileo's time). Venus' transit of the Sun
VENUS TRANSIT & MANY SUNSPOTS
Delta IV Heavy (Skyepony)
Excellent rumble.
Delta IV Heavy

Reader Comments

Comments will take a few seconds to appear.

Post Your Comments

Please sign in to post comments.

or Join

Not only will you be able to leave comments on this blog, but you'll also have the ability to upload and share your photos in our Wunder Photos section.

Display: 0, 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted

Viewing: 191 - 141

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9Blog Index

BTW I updated the CURRENT PLANETS finder section at the top of the blog entry.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Tonight's "Super Moon", the largest/closest/brightest of the year, is a full moon and so it will rise near sunset and set near sunrise.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Rob Yep, next up from the Cape is a SpaceX Dragon capsule atop a Falcon 9 rocket scheduled for May 19. It is the first planned cargo delivery by a commercial entity to the International Space Station.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Quoting LowerCal:
Rob, Skye apparently the launch was a day late for our purposes. ;^)

There will be more.
:o)

Thanks for the updates.

Gotta pay attention and finish up the week.
Take care!
Member Since: September 2, 2008 Posts: 102 Comments: 33599
Spacecraft separation! The payload has been successfully delivered to the targetted orbit.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Rob, Skye apparently the launch was a day late for our purposes. ;^)
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
The upper stage is coasted in a parking orbit for 8 minutes. A second burn of the upper stage currently in progress will deliver the payload to a geosynchronous transfer orbit.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Main Engine CutOff #1 (MECO 1) has occurred. The Centaur upper stage is currently coasting.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
183. Skyepony (Mod)
Just dorked it! No trails but thick chemtrails can be seen from here.
Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 226 Comments: 39436
Well, I tried, but a solid wall of white clouds between me and the cape.
Member Since: September 2, 2008 Posts: 102 Comments: 33599
Liftoff was successful. The solid rocket boosters left a beautiful kinked white smoke column under fair skies. The first burn of the upper stage is now in progress.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Less than one hour to the scheduled liftoff of and Atlas V from Cape Canaveral, FL

Chances of favorable weather are down to 60% for today's launch. The launch window runs from 2:42pm to 4:42pm EDT.

You can find current status updates and live video launch coverage at

Spaceflight Now | Atlas Launch Report | Mission Status Center.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
huri The size and brilliance of the Super Moon of May 5-6 2012 may not be obvious without other full moons for side by side comparison. A more noticeable effect might be the larger tidal range and stronger tidal flow.

The full moon isn't the best time for meteor watching but I hope you are able to spot some Eta Aquariids.

Thanks for your kind words.

Rob Thank you too.

I hope the launch visibility is just as good tomorrow.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Ditto what Hurigo said.

See you tomorrow afternoon!
Member Since: September 2, 2008 Posts: 102 Comments: 33599
Greetings LowerCal and all Sky Watchers.

So we are having a "super moon" tonight tomorrow, yesterday? I will be looking for the pretty lass, whatever form she takes this evening and morrow. I'll even be peeking through wherever shadows for any meteors that Her Brilliance might upstage.

I was going to post a link to EarthSky but I see you have that prominently displayed already.

Thanks LoC for always putting together a nice playbill and commentary. Your sky guide is so much better than a TV guide.



Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Miles O'Brien reports on the SpaceX Dragon capsule on the PBS NewsHour this evening.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
From United Launch Alliance:

"The launch of an Atlas 5 carrying the United States Air Force's Advanced Extremely High Frequency 2 (AEHF 2) payload was scrubbed today due to lack of helium flow from the ground support equipment to the Interstage Adapter compartment on the launch vehicle. The Atlas 5 vehicle and AEHF 2 are safe and secure at this time. The launch is rescheduled for Friday, May 4 from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla. The opening of the launch window is 2:42 p.m. EDT and extends until 4:42 p.m. The forecast for May 4 shows an 80 percent chance of favorable weather conditions for the launch tomorrow."
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Rob I cross posted. Thanks for the word on the rescheduling. :^)

If the problem can be resolved in time tomorrow's launch window is 2:42-4:42pm EDT.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
The Atlas V launch has been postponed due to the purge problem. No word as yet on rescheduling of the launch.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Oh, well. If at first you don't succeed, try again tomorrow!
Member Since: September 2, 2008 Posts: 102 Comments: 33599
2025 GMT (3:25 p.m. EDT)
SCRUB. Today's launch of the Atlas 5 rocket with the Air Force's AEHF 2 secure communications satellite has been scrubbed due to the no-flow condition for the Centaur interstage adapter purge problem.

In the end, officials decided against sending a crew into the launch platform, beneath the million-pound rocket, to check a manually-operated valve in the purge system that feeds the Centaur interstage adapter. The United Launch Alliance and Air Force launch team plans will try again tomorrow at 2:42 p.m. EDT (1842 GMT).
Member Since: September 2, 2008 Posts: 102 Comments: 33599
Additionally there is some intermittent radio frequency interference on the range. The source will need to be identified to make certain it can be eliminated and won't resume.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Technically there may be a problem with the configuration of a valve on an Centaur interstage adapter purge system which has resulted in a overtemp condition.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
The countdown is on HOLD while the launch team works to resolve a possible plumbing issue.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Chances of favorable weather have increased to 90% for today's launch of an Atlas V from Cape Canaveral, FL. Clouds will only be scattered permitting widespread visibility of of the smoke column of three solid rocket boosters.

Today's launch window runs from 2:46pm to 4:46pm EDT.

You can find current status updates and live video launch coverage at

Spaceflight Now | Atlas Launch Report | Mission Status Center.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Pat That SpaceX Falcon 9 launch will probably happen May 19 at the earliest. Link

As a sidenote it's a good thing for SpaceX that it already has plenty of business other than the U.S. government lined up. More congressional antics with spaceflight funding are going on.

Spaceflight Now | Breaking News | NASA: Competition at core of commercial crew program
NASA managers argued Tuesday a proposal by lawmakers to immediately select a single provider for commercial crew transportation services would undermine the agency's strategy of reducing the cost of space travel through private industry.
....
"If we get narrowed down to one [provider] now, we're kind of back into the same old way of doing business, and that's why a system costs $8 billion to build," said Brent Jett, NASA's deputy program manager for commercial crew.

According to [Ed Mango, manager of NASA's commercial crew program], a budget reduction now would delay the beginning of commercial crew service to the International Space Station, extending U.S. reliance on Russia for astronaut access to space.
....
Mango said competition also encourages innovation, adding partners have put in more private money in previous commercial crew development rounds to accelerate testing in order to obtain a competitive advantage for future bids.
....
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Quoting LowerCal:
Rob You probably won't need radar to see this tomorrow:

An Atlas V launch from Cape Canaveral AFS, Florida is scheduled for Thursday afternoon in a 2:46-4:46pm EDT time window. The launch vehicle will have three smoke producing solid rocket boosters.

The latest forecast is for 80% favorable launch weather conditions.

You can find current status updates and live launch coverage at

Spaceflight Now | Atlas Launch Report | Mission Status Center


For the umteenth time...thanks for the heads up!

You Da (space) Man!
Member Since: September 2, 2008 Posts: 102 Comments: 33599
Rob You probably won't need radar to see this tomorrow:

An Atlas V launch from Cape Canaveral AFS, Florida is scheduled for Thursday afternoon in a 2:46-4:46pm EDT time window. The launch vehicle will have three smoke producing solid rocket boosters.

The latest forecast is for 80% favorable launch weather conditions.

You can find current status updates and live launch coverage at

Spaceflight Now | Atlas Launch Report | Mission Status Center
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Well, shucks!
I checked and maybe that Tampa hurricane shield works for meteors too...nothin here!
:o)

Interesting links though!
Member Since: September 2, 2008 Posts: 102 Comments: 33599
From step 3 of How to Find a Meteorite | Meteorite Hunting | Space.com
....
Recently, Marc Fries of the Carnegie Institute of Washington developed a technique to locate falls without the need for a precise trajectory or dark flight. Fries uses Doppler weather radar to detect a "rain" of meteoritic particles falling to the ground, permitting rapid location of meteorite fall zones. It was this technique that defined the fall area for the California meteorite and led to Ward's find. Fries' blog, Radar Obs of Meteor Events, is "perhaps THE URL for a meteorite hunter to check," Cooke wrote.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
BC Hi! Thanks. I enjoy the comments you add from time to time. Yep, you read my mind, lol. :^)
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
I just wanted to say Hi and let you know I enjoy lurking here, even though I don't have anything to add. Interesting photos. Interesting LATimes article. I bet you'd like to be up north hunting for meteor rocks, too.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
sp You did very well to even notice that tiny spot. :^) Thanks for the additional resource and the bump.

Pieces of the Earth Day Meteorite have already been found -
Meteor shower: Treasure seekers flock to California Gold Country - latimes.com.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Hey, thought I'd give this a bump for those who missed it yesterday - still time to find an event! :)

Also, a few pretty nice photos of the booming meteor last week. I'm sure there are more out there. Wonder if any WU cams picked it up.

Happy Astronomy Day!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I was going to post a comment about Astronomy Day but couldn't get my cursor over the tiny space in the blog title section to get here >:(
LOL
I found an event in Moorpark (through S&T) and that looks like fun :) I do like their observatory and haven't been in many years. Weather should be fine!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
You can find a "public welcome" Astronomy day near you at
Astronomy Day Events - April 2012 | The Astronomical League
and by doing a web search for
"Astronomy Day" "your nearest city/town".
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Rob Sounds like you got a wonderful light show just the same.

crab Wouldn't be nearly as interesting without the variety of orbital inclinations though.

You're welcome. I appreciate the word and the bump.

Pat Thanks for the heads up. They safe and sound in Kazakhstan now.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Expedition 30 Crew Returning Home Friday

The six astronauts and cosmonauts aboard the International Space Station packed cargo and shifted their sleep schedule Thursday as three Expedition 30 crew members prepare to return to Earth early Friday after five and a half months in space.

Expedition 30 Commander Dan Burbank and Flight Engineers Anton Shkaplerov and Anatoly Ivanishin, who arrived at the orbiting complex on Nov. 16, are set to undock in their Soyuz TMA-22 spacecraft at 4:18 a.m. EDT Friday for a landing in the steppe of Kazakhstan at 7:45 a.m.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129902
Heya LC! Long time........ :D

We went out last night to soak inna solar heated hot tub and ponder the curvy "alignment"; saw a few skyzippers. Stupid Venus -- seems like it never gets the memo -- slightly out of line. Hard to craft a decent doom prophecy when the planets don't cooperate.

S'okay, though. Coupla irridium flares made up for it.

thank you for all your info for us. I don't say that enough. :up:
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
We actually got a break in the clouds right around midnight. I went out and could see a lot of stars peeking through. Unfortunately the rain we had gotten made the mosquitoes very happy so I had to withdraw from the field.

Was a very interesting view for about 10 minutes. Clear overhead, solid overcast to the west with a whole lotta lightning goin on.
Member Since: September 2, 2008 Posts: 102 Comments: 33599
Rob, huri You're welcome, you're welcome! :^)

I woke up at 1:20am and went outside to find that the sky was closed. I went right back to bed. It seemed like a very good idea at the time, lol.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Quoting LowerCal:
For those of you dealing with rain, clouds, fog, haze or are just stuck to a computer ;^) NASA will be showing live video of the Lyrid meteor shower from a balloon cam, the International Space Station and the All Sky Camera Network. Details are in the article
NASA - '3-D' Lyrid Meteor Shower: Up All Night NASA Chat.


Thank You
Thank You
Thank You
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Oops, missed full quote. Trying to fix
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting LowerCal:
For those of you dealing with rain, clouds, fog, haze or are just stuck to a computer ;^) NASA will be showing live video of the Lyrid meteor shower from a balloon cam, the International Space Station and the All Sky Camera Network. Details are in the article
NASA - '3-D' Lyrid Meteor Shower: Up All Night NASA Chat.

Cool!
Thanks!
Member Since: September 2, 2008 Posts: 102 Comments: 33599
Still hopeful that maybe that thing in the gulf sucks enough dry air to give me a view. If not, will be content with the rain.

As for the hypersonic flight vehicle...learning. Hopefully at some point in the future, we will be replacing the shuttle with the next generation. Projects of this type add to our knowledge, building the tech of the future. The space program has always paid off that way in ways that could not have been imagined at the time the "experiments" took place.

Going to sign off for a bit. Will be up late tonight either watching storms or watching meteors!

Take care!
Member Since: September 2, 2008 Posts: 102 Comments: 33599
For those of you dealing with rain, clouds, fog, haze or are just stuck to a computer ;^) NASA will be showing live video of the Lyrid meteor shower from a balloon cam, the International Space Station and the All Sky Camera Network. Details are in the article
NASA - '3-D' Lyrid Meteor Shower: Up All Night NASA Chat.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Rob Looks like those rain showers will be more welcome than meteor showers this evening too. Pleasant dreams. 3^)

huri Oh I hate when that happens! :^(

sp It's a little early in the year for that temperature but nothing exceptional for Woodland Hills. It's pleasant enough in the shade, indoors or outdoors, and the dogs are content with a slower pace on the daily long walk. :^)

I can see it as useful after you could get highly reliable actionable intelligence at that speed too - worldwide in less than an hour.

I'll probably be facing a similar situation this evening. We don't often get fog here but an impenetrable haze layer will get higher and higher until it closes overhead.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9303
Hey, LC, I see Woodland Hills made the record books for high temp yesterday. Bummer! lol

Did you see the news on the hypersonic flight vehicle that launched from VAFB last summer? One of those things that is amazing but seems kind of useless, to me.

I think I'll probably miss the meteor shower. Last night saw the fog rolling in before midnight and I couldn't even see the end of the block!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Hi Ya'll.
So happy to see the comment about the Lyrid showers. I was so very much looking forward to them, and have been planning my viewing spot for weeks. Excitement accelerated when I saw there would be a new moon to welcome them. And now, I am sad as there are storms/rain moving in Saturday evening all day Sunday here on the east coast.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:

Viewing: 191 - 141

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9Blog Index

Top of Page

About LowerCal

Astronomy with a minimum of terminology and technology.

LowerCal's Recent Photos

Watch for Falling Trees - 5
Watch for Falling Trees - 4
Watch for Falling Trees - 3
Watch for Falling Trees - 2

Personal Weather Stations

APRSWXNET Woodland Hills CA US
Calabasas, CA
Elevation: 984 ft
Temperature: 51.0 °F
Dew Point: 34.0 °F
Humidity: 53%
Wind: Calm
Wind Gust: 2.0 mph
Updated: 5:33 AM PST on December 01, 2013
At Gonzales Drive
Woodland Hills, CA
Elevation: 984 ft
Temperature: 56.2 °F
Dew Point: 22.7 °F
Humidity: 27%
Wind: 9.0 mph from the North
Wind Gust: 9.0 mph
Updated: 12:07 PM PST on December 25, 2014

About Personal Weather Stations