Category Archives: Planet News

Moon and the Parachute Conjunction

There is so much blabbering about Conjunctions nowadays in the astronomy field that I thought my contribution should be there too. During mid-march 2012 you would hear about the Jupiter Venus conjunction, then at the end of the month came the Moon, Jupiter and Venus conjunction. And nowadays  Venus and Pleiades conjunction are making the headlines. (Hope I’ll be posting on these conjunctions) But I am here today with my moon parachute conjunction.

A few days back I went biking after a long pause.  But I didn’t even think that  I would  get this exquisite view of this “conjunction”. After a ride you just want to take a pause, but if you see something remarkable, you just forget the tire-some ride. I had to fumble around quickly for my mobile to take these shots.

 

What seemed peculiar about these parachutes (there were two) were that they were motor driven. I don’t even know what they are called ? Motorized Parachutes?  Or What?

And where was this?

The view was awesome.  This is the view of the Port Chambly Villas & Hotel at Baie du Tombeau. A man made paradise in a natural paradise.

These photos could be considered as the worst in pixels, but personally I liked them. I am not a photographer, neither  an amateur photographer , but I think I do aspire to do some amateur nature photopraghy and  astrophotography later. ( Hope this realizes in the future.)

However, I would always invite any positive criticism to do  better.

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Moon between Procyon and Gemini

Moon between Procyon And Gemini

Hey, Do you see the moon tonite. Isn’t it beautiful?  So what are these stars nearby? Or are they planets? The whole week it had been  raining. But now, though the sporadic showers we can have  a beautiful sky tonight.

Tonight at 11:00 p.m ( local Mauritian Time), in our sky the moon which is in its waxing gibbous phase, is between three stars. The star above the moon is Procyon. Procyon is the brightest star in the constellation Canis Minor (the small Dog). And below the moon we have two stars Castor and Pollux. These two stars are in the constellation Gemini (the Twins).

Towards the West, you can have a look at Sirius, the brightest star in our skies. Sirius is in the constellation Canis Major (the Big Dog). And towards North West you would have to raise your head to see Mars , a bright looking yellow star in the constellation Leo. Though as I said Mars looks like a star but is not. It’s a planet. So have a look before it starts raining cats and dogs again.

Did you know that in the Southern Hemisphere, the moon passes between the Gemini stars and Procyon once a month? And people living in the Northern Hemisphere will see the moon, Gemini stars, and Procyon in their southern evening sky. They’ll see the scene “upside down,” with Procyon shining below the moon, and Castor and Pollux above the moon?

Night sky scene in the northern hemisphere

You still don’t understand? Ok, just do the up-stand position in front of the night sky, you would get the “upside down” scene.

Chocolate Mars with Leo

Addiction is  a bad thing. People are  addicted to anything mobile phones, T.V, video games,  cigarettes, internet, Facebook, drugs or even  chocolate. It always leads to something real bad. What about being addicted to the night sky?

Getting up late at night and going outside and gazing up at  the  sky is something to be done, especially as it is summer now. It’s so refreshing, clears up the mind and even puts you on  a high . You get the real calmness of the night, coupled with a light breeze going right  through your hair, your favourite chocolate with you……. this is a great moment ( ……. ). Experience it at 2:00 a.m.

However, you don’t need to be addicted to the night sky, you  can just be a casual night gazer. It’s free. People  don’t just gaze at something, they  don’t understand, so gazing should be coupled with knowing , understanding and appreciation. The night sky is there for that.  It’s just the factor of amazement,  The everyday amazement of such a beautiful  created sky is longing to be seen and  appreciated. Not just that it needs to be appreciated because it’s beautiful  but to think that the sky has been there with all it’s  majesty for so long and has been amazing billions of people around the globe and would stay a wonder. Obviously it is there for a perfect reason.

So what’s up there in the night sky?

Nous sommes au mois de Mars, nous devrions regarder la planète Mars. It’s great that Mars is there up for us to see.

Mars towards East

Mars is already in the sky towards the East as from the evening at sunset. If you fancy following Mars the whole night then  you would have to raise your head towards  the east and then follow it towards the west . Mars would drown itself in the western horizon at about 4:00 a.m in the morning. So, have your eyes up. If ever, during this weekend  you’re planning anything outside at night, or just get up from sleep at 2:00 am then visit mars on Leo’s  belly.

Towards the west at 2:00 a.m. It’s  great that Mars is there up for us to see.  (If you ever get up at night:)) Mars would be in front of you, if you face towards the west and look up at the sky. Mars is settled just above the constellation of Leo. It’s just as if Mars is on the belly of the lion while the lion is dozing off with its four feet upwards.  You don’t have to picture all this ,but it’s just so amazing to see Regulus and the other stars too.

Regulus? Now what is this? Regulus is the main brightest star in the constellation Leo.  Known also as the heart of the Lion.

Regulus - The Lion's heart

I still don’t find it?

At sunset , that is where the sun sets , toward the west. Look towards the sun. Then change your position to 90 degrees that’s the  East. Now look towards  the sky in this position a little later( about half or an hour later)  after sunset, you would see a bright yellow looking star, which doesn’t twinkle.  That is Planet Mars. If you look at it with a pair of binoculars you would see that is glowing red. So, have a look and give me your shout.

So if you are addicted in any way,  other than sleeping, Then go out  to see the night sky. Give me a shout if you find Mars.

 

The conjunction of Venus and Jupiter

What do you say about that?

Ahhh. That star…. it’s so bright. I see it almost nearly everyday from my room.

It’s so clear here….. I think this is the same star.

I was rather smiling at my friend at this point.

Etaaa …. You studied Physics your whole life and you don’t even know that this is not a star.

Ooh….Ohhh….Ohhh

This is planet Venus, the brighter one and the other is Jupiter.

I think this was too harsh for my friend who had just dropped by my house. Anyone looking at these planets would obviously say that these planets are stars. They shine so bright. As for Venus, wow, it is brighter than Sirius (the brightest star in our night sky) nowadays. But how to know if they are not stars. Stars shine and they shimmer in brightness (twinkle), but planets do shine but do not shimmer. Yeah if there is a wind then they would, but if it’s calm they won’t shimmer.

Looking towards the West Northwest as from the sunset until 8:00 pm, the conjunction of Venus and Jupiter would be easily seen.  Venus and Jupiter would remain closer during the few days to come.

This News Bulletin just released by the The Astronomy And Nature Centre TV gives a good explanation coupled with a presentation on Stellarium.

If you want to get a quick idea of the conjunction in 90 seconds then listen to this podcast. If you ever fantasy tacking a picture of them just give me a shout.

Have your eyes up to the sky and you will appreciate the view.

Venus-Jupiter on 14/03/2012

Venus and Jupiter on 15/03/2012

 

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