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Post Info TOPIC: June 2008


L

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RE: June 2008
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Highlights

The Solstice on June 20th (23:59UT) marks the official start of summer. It is the longest day for us in the northern hemisphere, and marks the celtic festival of Middansumor (AErra Liša)

The Summer Triangle -- Vega, Deneb, and Altair -- holds the central position, high in the south. The scorpion sits low to the south and slightly west. Directly to the arachnid's east is Sagittarius, the Archer, and between the two lies the direction toward the Milky Way galaxy's centre. The ribbon of soft light that delineates our galaxy flows up from the south, through the Triangle, and then cascades toward the northern horizon.

Notable Messier objects

M13   in the constellation Hercules, is one of the largest of over 100 globular clusters in our Galaxy. Located about 25,000 light-years away, it contains about half a million stars packed into a space only a few tens of light years in diameter. Globular clusters contain some of the oldest stars in the Universe.
M56 Also in the constellation of Lyra we find our first globular cluster of the night. In a telescope look for a small round ball of light, slightly brighter in the centre. This is a difficult binocular object appearing as a small fuzzy patch.
M27 Also known as the Dumbbell nebula, the largest planetary nebula in the Messier Catalogue, M27 lies in the constellation Vulpecula. Fairly easy to see in binoculars as a small hazy patch. In small to medium scopes it appears as a rectangular patch of light. In large scopes it may even appear round in shape with a bright rectangular, or dumbbell shaped core.

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L

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On June 3rd, there is a New Moon -- a good time to observe the planets and stars all night without a bright light ruining your view. On June 7th, Mars is real close to the crescent Moon in the West at Sunset. Saturn is just above the crescent Moon on the 8th.

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