Photo Op July 15 (see blog entry)

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

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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
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All Time Visitors
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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

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At the bottom of the blog entry I added a WunderPhoto of the luminous night clouds created by the ATREX mission.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
I added a WunderPhoto of yesterday's evening's conjuction at the bottom of the blog entry.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
After delays this morning due to winds and then a boat in the avoidance area the Anomalous Transport Rocket Experiment (ATREX) mission rockets were finally successfully launched with just two minutes remaining in the launch window.

From the Wallops Island, Virgina launch blog:
Posted by RCC on 2012-03-27 at 05:33:02 EDT
All five rockets were successful. First launch at 4:58 a.m. Reports as far south as Wilmington,NC; west to Charlestown, W.VA and north to Buffalo, NY. This concludes ATREX coverage. Next launch from Wallops is no earlier than late May.
....
For more details on the mission see the blog entry.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
For those of you not using Windows Media Player or even Windows the Virginia launch webcast is also currently live at

NASA Wallops on USTREAM: NASA Ustream live broadcast of the ATREX 5 rocket salvo form the Wallops Flight Facility on the beautiful Eastern Shore of Virginia.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
Here are the schedule details on tonight's multiple glowing cloud launches from Wallops Island, Virginia.

From the Wallops Island, Virgina launch blog:
Posted by RCC on 2012-03-25 at 19:50:35 EDT
NASA managers have given a "go" for a countdown leading to the launch of five suborbital sounding rockets early in the morning March 27 on a science mission that will briefly create a milky white cloud that may be visible along a large portion of the U.S. east coast. The launch window for the mission will be between 2 and 5 a.m., Tuesday, March 27. The countdown will begin at 9 p.m., Monday, March 26. Clear skies are predicted for the Tuesday launch. However, ground level winds may exceed allowable limits for the flights to occur.Web Cast and Ustream coverage will begin at 10 p.m., Monday, March 26.
For details on what you can expect to see and from what states see the blog entry.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
GG That's a beautiful image and inspiring travel promotion.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
Hey got to see the sky show of Jupiter, Venus and the Moon. Caught this shot and thought it was pretty neat.

Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 259 Comments: 9835
I added three WunderPhotos of the conjunction at the bottom of the blog entry. Two more evenings of photo ops still to come!

shore You guessed correctly. It's easy to see in the days before eyeglasses such conjunctions had supernatural significance.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
Wow! I was headed off to bed when I looked out the window - even without my contacts in I could see there was something going on! It's beautifully clear, and the crescent moon is about 25 degrees above the horizon with a planet above it - I'd guess Venus. Just stunning.
Member Since: October 4, 2004 Posts: 205 Comments: 15288
I added another WunderPhoto at the bottom of the blog entry.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
Once again the Virginia launches have been rescheduled. See the blog entry for visibility of the rockets, tracer clouds and other info.

From the Wallops Island, Virgina launch blog:
Posted by RCC on 2012-03-24 at 19:28:52 EDT
NASA has scheduled the launch of five suborbital sounding rockets from the Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia as part of a study of the upper level jet stream between midnight and 5 a.m., Tuesday, March 27. The countdown will begin Monday evening March 26. The launch window may be narrowed following a weather briefing Sunday evening, March 25.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
goofyrider I hope so. Photos would be nice too. :^) Just confirming, they'll be launching early Sunday morning at the earliest.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
Nice clear skies last night, Sun looks bad. We will or may see something here.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I added a WunderPhoto of some of yesterday's aurora activity at the bottom of the blog entry.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
I updated the directions to spotting the planets and brilliant stars in the
CURRENT PLANETS
section near the top of the blog entry.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
From the Wallops Island, Virgina launch blog:
Posted by RCC on 2012-03-23 at 01:41:37 EDT
Next attempt is no earlier than Sunday morning, March 25.

Posted by RCC on 2012-03-23 at 01:32:43 EDT
We have canceled today's launch attempt. Stand by for next attempt.

Posted by RCC on 2012-03-23 at 01:30:28 EDT
It looks likewe will have boat interference for at least the next hour.

Pat Thanks for the update on the ESA resupply mission to the ISS.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
European Cargo Ship Launches to Intl Space Station

The European Space Agency's third Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV-3) launched atop an Ariane 5 rocket from the Arianespace launch site in Kourou, French Guiana, at 12:34 a.m. EDT Friday, beginning a six-day journey to the International Space Station. The 13-ton "Edoardo Amaldi" spacecraft, named in honor of the 20th-century Italian physicist who is regarded as one of the fathers of European spaceflight, is delivering 7.2 tons of propellant, water and supplies to the six crew members aboard the orbital laboratory.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129419
From the Wallops Island, Virgina launch blog:
Posted by RCC on 2012-03-22 at 23:47:23 EDT
T-15 minutes and holding for skies to improve at the viewing sites.

Posted by RCC on 2012-03-22 at 23:41:39 EDT
Weather brief starting

Posted by RCC on 2012-03-22 at 23:31:23 EDT
T-30 minutes and counting to the opening of the launch window. Latest report from the principal investigator is that we have clear skies at Wallops however they are seeing clouds at the NJ and NC sites. Hopeful we can get a break in the clouds.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
Dawn is beginning to wash out the aurora on the Sweden webcams. It will be a while before they begin to show on the Canadian and Alaskan webcams.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
Good evening, Pat. Winds are a concern at the moment. :^/
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
..ignition

Full Thrust,

Woooooooooo, hooooooooooo...


Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129419
The Wallops Island, Virgina launch blog is currently live.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
Aurora activity is currently showing on all the Sweden webcams in the Live Aurora Cams: section near the top of the blog entry.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
I've added info on tonight's "weird clouds launch" near the top of the blog entry. Thanks to Patrap for the early heads up in comment 24 and to Ralfo for today's reminder.


sp It's hard to keep my blog updated and shiny with the distraction of all the interesting content on other blogs. I do appreciate the contributions from everywu.

Thanks for noting the equinox. Northern Hemisphere days are longer than nights now and will keep getting longer for the next three months.

I haven't looked for the supernovae yet. Thanks for mentioning them and the link to the great resource for locating them and background info.


Karen Thanks for that nice image. I'm going to add it at the bottom of the blog entry. Venus and Jupiter are always very bright and Venus is always the more brilliant one.


Pat Thanks for quickly and correctly fielding that question.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
Thanks Patrap! I thought so! They were so bright in the sky and I was hoping my camera captured them.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Yes Ma'mm
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129419
I went down to the beach with my daughter last night to snap a few pictures. Goal was to get the sunset, but we were just a tad too late. So we made our way down to the pier, and I just snapped this photo. I wasn't even sure if it would turn out at all. While it's not the clearest of pictures, I believe these are Jupiter (below) and Venus (above). I used these photos to label them.

Am I right?

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
It's nice to see your blog all updated and shiny, LC :)
Along with all the contributions from wuers everywhere.
Happy Equality Day!
Member Since: January 27, 2007 Posts: 82 Comments: 4307
I added the March 24-27 photo ops info with computer generated images in the
***** Current & Future Events *****
section near the top of the blog entry. I added additional info on other visual opportunities, naked eye and binocular.

I also added some WunderPhotos in the
***** Past Events *****
section of the blog entry and at the bottom of the blog entry.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
Correction - I'll have to read 2061 and 3001.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
It's all the same to me, Pat.

(Of course I'm going to have to rent 2010 and 2061 now, lol.)
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
..yes indeed.


you want the chicken LC?


Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129419
Pat A lot of people could have used that in 1968.

GG You're welcome. I'm glad to hear you're OK in the red. I'll be gladder when it's past.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
Thanks LC :-D

Well, the big 'ol rain line has shown up here. Watched the front come in from our hill. Now radar is showing "red" on top of us but so far it's okay.
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 259 Comments: 9835


..click the Star Child Image to see the video.

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129419
GG I'm not one to ask about run on sentences, lol.

Thanks for the reminder about the crescent, Venus and Jupiter and supplying the impulse to update my blog. I think there will be good photo opportunities March 24-27. 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 Venus and Jupiter, get an idea of lighting at various times and take some test shots.

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.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
Hi, here's a question that I don't know if you could point me to the answer.

According to some article I read at the first of the year called, "Cool astronomy events" or something,
then marked all this stuff on my calender, March 25th is supposed to be a photo op of crescent Moon, Venus and Mars. (run-on sentence much?)

So what I'm wondering is about what time in the evening the viewing/photographing would be optimal.
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 259 Comments: 9835
shore Photo Op + Imagination :^)

Thanks for that wonderful image.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
Here's a different take on those two planets that are just a cat's ears apart...

Member Since: October 4, 2004 Posts: 205 Comments: 15288
Pat Thanks for the demo of the plans. While I wish we were further along I can't complain about progress.

barefoot Thanks for the wish. I'll be even happier next year if I remember to get some green food coloring for my beer. ;^)

gamma Thanks for the wish. :^)

"A rose by any other name would smell as sweet ...." of course but I'm glad I could supply the names for you.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
Hello LowerCal,

I noticed that beautiful scene last weekend while on the balcony in Marco Island over looking the Gulf of Mexico.. it was beautiful!
At the time I did not realize what I was looking at until I got back home!


Just wanted to pop in here and wish you a

Happy St Patti's Day!

Rainbow image
St Patricks Day Graphics
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
:)

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
..let's get America's Future back on track and into Orbit..,"kick dem tire's and light dem fire's"


Young and Crippen STS-1 April 1981


Orion: Exploration Flight Test-1 Animation (with narration by Jay Estes)

This animation depicts the proposed test flight of the Orion spacecraft in 2014. During the test, which is called Exploration Flight Test-1 (EFT-1), Orion will launch from Cape Canaveral, Fla., perform two orbits, reaching an altitude higher than any achieved by a spacecraft intended for human use since 1973, and then will re-enter and land in the Pacific Ocean off the west coast of the United States. Narration by Jay Estes, Deputy for flight test integration in the Orion program.

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129419
Pat Thanks for all those items of interest. In the coming days we can look for a possible aurora display and a possible bright comet departing the Sun. I should also look for more great images of the Venus & Jupiter conjunction in the WunderPhotos too.

Quoting Patrap:
Im not sure if this is 100%, but the "creep" factor and recent events on SOL are kinda, .."freakkkkkkyyyyyyyyy"........
Exactly where I'd put that percentage is somewhere less than double digits, L0L.
Quoting LowerCal:
OK, so maybe there's something to it after all. ;^)



Believers in the 2012 end-times .... got a boost today, with a new picture posted on the NASA website ....

Our star's obscene gesture follows the biggest solar storm in eight years, ....

Link
(We're just having a little fun, folks.)
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
A interesting one here LC.

Another Comet?

Tue, 13 Mar 2012

SOHO and STEREO are reporting another Kruetz comet moving toward the Sun. It is expected to make its closest approach to the Sun tomorrow, March 14. If it survives perihelion and is bright enough, we would see this comet appearing in the upper right side of the Sun and moving down over the disk. Current estimates are that this comet is smaller than Lovejoy. At this time we do not know the time of perihelion passage.



We have a daily eclipse of the Sun by the Earth (at 0630-0730 UTC tomorrow), and a momentum management burn tomorrow at from 1845-1915 UTC. During both periods the images of the Sun may be absent.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129419
Low in the West.

The Venus and Jupiter conjunction is seen from France this week.
Photograph by Laurent Laveder, TWAN

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129419
Im not sure if this is 100%, but the "creep" factor and recent events on SOL are kinda, .."freakkkkkkyyyyyyyyy"........


Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129419

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129419
Pat Thanks for the heads up! Solar wind events are a more consistent trigger of aurora activity. Keep an eye on the webcam links in the "Live Aurora Cams:" section near the top of the blog entry.

Shore Glad to hear you had a clear view this evening. I've got some exceptional (for this so called winter) overcast skies here at the most inopportune time.

If ever the information isn't here when you come to double-check feel free to demand it. ;^)

GG Made ya look! :^b
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9227
Finally got some time to check the blogs, saw your heading and immediantly went outside.
They are bright. Thought it was two incoming planes at first.
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 259 Comments: 9835

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Astronomy with a minimum of terminology and technology.

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APRSWXNET Woodland Hills CA US
Calabasas, CA
Elevation: 984 ft
Temperature: 51.0 °F
Dew Point: 34.0 °F
Humidity: 53%
Wind: Calm
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At Gonzales Drive
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Elevation: 984 ft
Temperature: 56.3 °F
Dew Point: 18.0 °F
Humidity: 22%
Wind: Calm
Wind Gust: 1.0 mph
Updated: 6:20 AM PST on November 24, 2014

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