Today’s Astronomical Events – May 21st, 2015

Sharp-eyed observers will be able to spot brilliant Venus close to the Moon shortly before sunset tonight. The pair remain visible until late in the evening while Castor and Pollux, the twin stars of Gemini, twinkle nearby. 

Take care to also look for Earthshine on the Moon. Earthshine is the reflected light from the Earth that causes the whole disc of the Moon to be seen. Can you see any details on the “dark side” of the Moon with just your eyes?

(Click on an image to enlarge.)

Images courtesy of Mobile Observatory. 



20:52 UT – The waxing crescent Moon passes Venus. (Venus: 58% illuminated, magnitude -4.2, diameter 19.8”. Naked eye, Gemini, evening sky. See images above.)

Good opportunity to see Earthshine on the waxing crescent Moon after sunset.



Events in bold involve objects and/or events that are visible with the naked eye.

All times are in Universal Time (UTC). To convert the time to your timezone, click here.

Learn more about upcoming astronomical events in 2015 An Astronomical Year (Kindle Edition) and The Astronomical Almanac (2015-2019) (Kindle Edition and Paperback Edition) and 2016 An Astronomical Year (North American Kindle Edition.)

The Amateur Astronomer’s Notebook allows astronomers to log 150 observing sessions and includes an appendix of hundreds of suggested deep sky objects.

Details of all available books across the world can be found here or by visiting the author’s page on Amazon.

If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to contact me at astronomywriter “at”


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