The Morning Moon Approaches Mars

 

February 29th, 2016

As everyone knows, February 29th only comes around once every four years and this year we have something to remember for early risers. The waning gibbous Moon is catching up to Mars but the ringed planet Saturn can also be seen nearby, a little further to the east.

Between the two planets lies Antares, the red giant star that marks the heart of Scorpius the Scorpion. Over the next few months Mars and Saturn will be coming closer together until Mars passes Saturn at the end of August.

Adapted from 2016: The Night Sky Sights (available in the U.S., Canada and the United Kingdom) and 2016: An Astronomical Year (available in the U.S., Canada and the United Kingdom.)

 

All Astronomical Events for February 29th, 2016

10:25 UT – Neptune is at apogee. Distance to Earth: 30.949 AU. (Magnitude 8.0, diameter 2.2”. Aquarius, not visible.)

17:54 UT – The waning gibbous Moon is north of Mars. (Mars: 90% illuminated, magnitude 0.2, diameter 8.6”. Libra, pre-dawn sky. See details above.)

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. Night sky simulations created using Mobile Observatory for Android devices.

2016 An Astronomical Year Paperback Cover 2016 The Night Sky Sights The Astronomical Almanac 2015-2019 Kindle Cover - Deep Sky Observer's Guide

Easy Things to See With a Small Telescope

2016: An Astronomical Year 2016: The Night Sky Sights The Astronomical Almanac (2015-2019) The Deep Sky Observer’s Guide

(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

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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