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What's Up...
Some observing hilights
to look forward to...

The following tips on current and upcoming astronomical events
have been gathered from magazines and other sources by Dave Gamble
with the objective of giving OC RASC members a heads-up on
special personal
astro-experiences to look forward to.

Wed. July 1 - Preparing for their midsummer performance, Saturn and Jupiter will rise after 1am low in the south between the stars of Capricornus and Sagittarius, only about a Moon's width apart.

Sat. July 4 - If this turns out to be a particularly hot day, a bit of consolation might be drawn from the thought that Earth is at aphelion, the farthest point in its orbit from the Sun, so it could be worse.

Sat. July 4 - This is Full Moon night with fully illuminated Luna rising low over the southern horizon late in the evening to brighten mid summer Okanagan scenes.

Sun. July 5 - Always ready to join a party, tonight after midnight the just past full Moon will rise just to the west of the Saturn, Jupiter pairing, creating an attractive summer tableau.

Fri. July 10 - In the wee hours after midnight tonight, the waning gibbous Moon will pose to the lower right of Mars. Our outer neighbour continues to increase in brightness as well as size in a telescope, as it moves ever nearer to its close opposition on October 13. Meanwhile, the tiny blue disk of Neptune can be seen with the aid of a telescope about the width of two fingers to Luna's upper right.

Sun. July 12 - This is Last Quarter Moon night. Luna will rise in the east in the early morning hours and the evenly divided disk will hang around to ornament the morning sky.

Tues. July 14 - Jupiter offers some great views particularly through telescopes, and tonight it will be at opposition, crowning its largest apparent size this year, culminating in the southern sky just after 1am.

Fri. July 17 - Just before daybreak this morning the waning crescent Moon will appear just to the left of Venus. If the pair rises over your eastern mountain line early enough you will also be able to see bright Aldebaran in Taurus just to the west of Venus.

Mon. July 20 - While Jupiter had its turn a week ago, tonight it is magnificent Saturn that reaches opposition. In a telescope, the second largest planet not only sports tiny moons, but her spectacular rings as well, now as large as they will appear this time round.

Mon. July 20 - This is New Moon night when our neighbour is completely out of the night sky, allowing deep sky observing and imaging… if the weatherman cooperates.

Wed. July 22 - It will be a close one from our latitude, however if you have a very low western horizon you may get a glimpse of a very young fingernail paring crescent Moon about the width of two fingers from the star Regulus. Its constellation Leo is preparing to dip below the western horizon where it will discretely pass behind the Sun to emerge into the dawn sky in late October.

Mon. July 27 - This is First Quarter Moon night. As darkness falls Luna's half sphere will shine down from the south inviting exploration of its crater strewn terminator with binoculars or a telescope.

Tues. July 28 - The Southern Delta Aquarid meteor shower peaks in the early morning hours tomorrow morning. Not being one of the more prominent showers, this one will be best viewed when the waxing gibbous Moon exits stage west after 11pm, with the peak occurring in the pre-dawn hours. Look for 'shooting stars' radiating upward from the southern sky in the early morning hours for a few days before and after as well.

Wed. July 29 - After 10pm tonight you might want to take a moment to look just to the southwest of the waxing gibbous Moon for the bright star Antares. At home it is a red supergiant star so large that, if it replaced the Sun, its outer surface would be somewhere between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter.

Fri. July 31 - And, at the end of the month, we return to where we began… with an evenly spaced congo line of Saturn, Jupiter and the waxing gibbous Moon arranged over the southern horizon around 11pm.