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Post Info TOPIC: February 2017


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February 2017
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Jupiter is stationary: relative to the ecliptic (assuming Retrograde motion) at 06:45 UT, 6th February 2017.

Jupiter is stationary: relative to the equator (assuming Retrograde motion) at 19:10 UT, 6th February 2017.

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Lunar perigee is at 14:11 UT, 6th February 2017

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The Moon occults Aldebaran at ~21:38 UT, 5th February 2017.

Aldebaran050217 

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Maximum northerly lunar libration is at 10:53 UT, 5th February 2017

libration050217



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Eyes on the Sky: Orion's Belt stars & Cr 70

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The First Quarter Moon is at 04:19 UT, 4th February 2017

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Venus is close to Mars (separation 5.4°) at 11:31 UT, 2nd February 2017

VenusMars020117



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Eyes on the Sky: How to find M36 and M37

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Meteor Showers

February has no major meteor showers but there are a couple of minor showers for Southern hemisphere observers, the Alpha and Beta Centaurids. Although the Alpha Centaurids is considered a minor shower, in some years the number of meteors rises enough to reach the level of a major shower. While Alpha & Beta Centaurids can occasionally be seen during most of the month, their peaks occur on the same night, in the early morning hours of February 8.

ShowerActivity PeriodMaximumRadiantVelocityZHR
  DateR.A.Dec.km/s 
Beta Centaurids1- 25 February9 February13.9h-58.1°58.913.2
Alpha Centaurids 9 February14.5h-59.8°58.27.0
Pi VirginidsFeb.- 9 March12 February    
Beta LeonidsFeb.- 25 March13 February    
Delta VelidsJan 22-Feb 2114 February08:44-52°351
Omicron CentauridsJan 31-Feb 1914 February11:48-56°512
Delta LeonidsFeb 15-Mar 1022 February11:12+16°232
Sigma Leonids 25 February176°+9° 2



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Highlights

 
daffodil2.gif

Objects of the Heart for Valentine's Day.

On February 14, many areas of the world will celebrate love with Valentine's Day. For those of you lucky enough to have a loved one of your own (or not), consider the following objects provided in the Heavens:
The first and most obvious is the planet of Venus, named after the Greek Goddess of love. Now, go over to the constellation of Cassiopeia, and you will find The Heart Nebula. Officially called by the decidedly less romantic "IC1805", the Heart Nebula glows a reddish hue (naturally) at magnitude +6. Surrounding the delicate splash of diamonds, is the star cluster Melotte 15.
Next is the Rosette Nebula, NGC 2237. Located in Monoceros, this delicate planetary nebula is perhaps one of the prettiest in the sky. Zoom in with a field of view of 4 degrees, you will see beauty gracefully bloom on your screen unlike anything you're seen before. If the roses have done their job, you may at last want to consider the Ring Nebula, M57. Rising in the early morning hours during the winter, M57 is one of the easiest to locate deep-sky objects and one of the most aptly named, nestled gently in the side of Lyra, the Lyre. Low power telescope views show a very small blue/green disk, not much bigger than a star. Medium to high power will magnify the size of the nebula while leaving the surrounding stars the same size, confirming you have found it. It can be seen in binoculars as a faint star like point of light.



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