Today’s Astronomical Events – July 6th, 2015

Pluto and Charon - 2015-06-25 and 2015-06-27

Pluto is at opposition today and is therefore at it’s best visibility for the whole year. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to see this tiny world for yourself unless you have a large telescope and know exactly where to look.

On the plus side, the New Horizons space probe is only eight days away from its flyby of the dwarf planet and its five moons. In the recent images above, you can see Pluto as an ochre orb with dark markings while it’s largest moon, Charon, appears almost completely grey. Scientists are waiting for a closer look to discover the source of these mysterious markings; the first images from the probe’s closest approach will start to arrive on the 15th.

(Left image taken June 25th, right image taken June 27th. Click on the image to enlarge.)

Image Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute.

 

 

19:40 UT – Earth is at aphelion. Distance to Sun: 1.017 AU.

07:05 UT – Pluto is at opposition. Distance to Earth: 31.888 AU (Pluto: magnitude 14.1. Sagittarius, all night.)

11:10 UT – The waning gibbous Moon passes Neptune. (Neptune: magnitude 7.9, diameter 2.3”. Aquarius, pre-dawn sky.)

 

 

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.

2015 An Astronomical Year (Kindle Edition) 2016 An Astronomical Year Paperback Cover 2016 The Night Sky Sights The Astronomical Almanac 2015-2019

2015: An Astronomical Year

2016: An Astronomical Year 2016: The Night Sky Sights The Astronomical Almanac (2015-2019) The Amateur Astronomer’s Notebook (Pocket Edition)

(Kindle & Paperback)

(Kindle & Paperback) (Kindle & Paperback) (Kindle & Paperback)

(Paperback)

Amazon – US

Amazon – US Amazon – US Amazon – US Amazon – US
Amazon – UK Amazon – UK Amazon – UK

Amazon – UK

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” gmail.com

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