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Post Info TOPIC: November 2011


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RE: November 2011
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Observe all the planets this month
 
An ambitious observer can spot all the naked-eye planets this November.  Jupiter is not a challenge. It rises in the east before sunset and is conspicuous by its brightness. Venus is slowly moving into the evening sky but to see it you need a clear southwest horizon.
It is visible, slightly brighter than Jupiter, very low in the southwest just after sunset. By Christmas Venus will be a fine evening star, reasonably high in the west at sunset.  Mercury is the most difficult planet to spot in November. It is bright but very low in the southwest. Look for it for a few days around November 14 when Mercury will be just below Venus. Uranus and Neptune are also in the evening sky.

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Mercury is close to Venus (2.0° separated from center of Venus) at 22:49 UT, 1st November.



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'Stargazing' for November

Bright white Venus is readily visible above the western horizon for awhile after sunset. It's called the 'evening star' by most. A lot of people don't know this but Venus has phases, just like the moon. Easily visible as a crescent in small telescopes or binoculars, it's also the number one object reported for a UFO!
Mercury is visible below Venus at the beginning of the week and becomes more prominent and closer to Venus as the week wears on. Jupiter now dominates the evening sky and now is a good time to begin telescopic observation of this massive world, or follow its moons in binoculars.

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Eyes on the Sky - 10/31-11/6


See what's up in the night sky this week. Find Saturn in the morning, Mercury and Venus in the evening, locate Uranus near the Moon and also Jupiter, Mars and more! Astronomy made simple, with "Eyes on the Sky" - in 4 minutes, find out what you can discover in the night sky, all by yourself! No previous knowledge of astronomy required. Just watch, and look!



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November 2011 Highlights



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Justsaynovember.gif



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Asteroids at Opposition

Asteroid (31) Euphrosyne (magnitude 10.2) is at Opposition on the 3rd November.

Asteroid (200) Dynamene at magnitude 11.3 is at Opposition on the 4th November.

Asteroid (29) Amphitrite at magnitude 8.7 is at Opposition on the 6th November.

Asteroid (415) Palatia at magnitude 11.3 is at Opposition on the 7th November.

Asteroid (201) Penelope at magnitude 11.5 is at Opposition on the 10th November.

Asteroid (68) Leto at magnitude 9.6 is at Opposition on the 11th November.

Asteroid (40) Harmonia at magnitude 9.4 is at Opposition on the 12th November.

Asteroid (270) Anahita at magnitude 10.6 is at Opposition on the 12th November.

Asteroid (14) Irene at magnitude 10.2 is at Opposition on the 12th November.

Asteroid (30) Urania at magnitude 9.6 is at Opposition on the 13th November.

Asteroid (115) Thyra at magnitude 11.0 is at Opposition on the 21st November.

Asteroid (63) Ausonia at magnitude 9.6 is at Opposition on the 23rd November.

Asteroid (92) Undina at magnitude 11.0 is at Opposition on the 25th November.

Asteroid (15) Eunomia at magnitude 7.9 is at Opposition on the 28th November.



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Mercury: at magnitude 0.3, starts the month in the constellation of Scorpius.  Mercury is close to Venus (2.0°) at 22:49 UT, 1st November; and again  (2.0°) at 8:28 UT on the 13th November.  Mercury is at Dichotomy (Half phase) at 3:35 UT, 19th November.
(On November 12th, RA=16h41m40s  Dec=-24°56.1' (J2000) Distance=1.052AU  Elongation= 23°   Phase k=67%  Diameter=6.4")

Venus: is at magnitude -3.9. The planet is in constellation Libra at the start of the month. It is best seen from 9.5h -16.9h. Venus was in conjunction in Right Ascension with Saturn on the 30th September. Venus is at aphelion (distance to sun: 0.728 AU) at 16:18 UT, 29th November.
(On November 1st, RA=15h45m19s  Dec=-20°07.4' (J2000) Distance=1.573AU  Elongation= 20°   Phase k=94%  Diameter=10.6")

  phase.gif


Earth: Partial Solar Eclipse at 4:23:17 UT, 25th November. This partial eclipse is visible over Antarctica and parts of South Africa and Tasmania.   

The Moon: First Quarter Moon (declination: -13.65°) at 16:38.2 UT, 2nd November. Full Moon (diameter: 29.551', declination: 19.44°) at 20:16.1 UT, 10th 
November. Lunar apogee (distance to moon center: 399817.6 km, apparent diameter: 29'53.3") at 13:06.7 UT, 8th November.  Last Quarter Moon (declination: 8.17°) at 15:09.1 UT, 18th November. Lunar perigee (distance moon center to earth center: 359679.6 km, apparent diameter: 33'49.4") at 23:14.3 UT, 23rd November.
New Moon (diameter: 33.087', declination: -21.73°) at 6:09.7 UT, 25
th November.

Mars: at magnitude 1.1 starts the month in the constellation Leo.
(On November 1st,  RA= 9h49m38s  Dec=+14°51.3' (J2000) Distance=1.582AU  Elongation= 74°   Phase k=90%  Diameter=5.9" )

Jupiter: is in the constellation Aries. At magnitude -2.9, the planet is best seen from  16.5h - 6.9h. Jupiter reached opposition in Aries on 29th October. The Moon is close to Jupiter, Separation 4.3°, at 16:35 UT, 9th November.
Transit times of the Great Red Spot are posted in a seprate thread.
(On November 1st,  RA= 2h11m47s  Dec=+11°42.0' (J2000) Distance=3.973AU  Elongation=176°   Diameter=49.6")

Saturn: at magnitude 0.7 sits in the constellation Virgo. The planet is best seen from 5.6h - 7.0h. Saturn is close to the star Spica (4.3deg) on the 14th.
(
On November 1st,  RA=13h25m40s  Dec= -6°33.6' (J2000) Distance=10.624AU  Elongation= 16°   Diameter=15.6")

Uranus: is in the constellation Pisces. Uranus at magnitude 5.7, has a bluish-green hue and appears 3.7 arcseconds wide.  Uranus was at Opposition on the 25th September.
(On November 1st, RA= 0h05m12s  Dec= -0°16.0' (J2000) Distance=19.277AU  Elongation=143°   Diameter=3.6")

Neptune: is at magnitude 7.9 in the constellation Aquarius. The planet is best seen from 19.0h -19.9h. Neptune is Stationary on the 9th November.
(
On November 1st, RA=22h01m25s  Dec=-12°41.6' (J2000) Distance=29.664AU  Elongation=109°   Diameter=2.3")

Pluto: is in the constellation Sagittarius (mag 14.1). Normally, a finder chart is necessary to help in identifying the 0.1" diameter dwarf planet. The dwarf planet is best seen from 18.2h - 5.5h.  
(On November 1st, RA=18h22m10s  Dec=-19°16.0' (J2000) Distance=32.646AU  Elongation= 57°   Diameter=0.1")

The Sun enters the zodiac sign of Sagittarius at 16:08 on the 22nd November.



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The northern Taurids and southern Taurids started to become active about October 1st, but do not reach maximums until early November. Both have fairly slow meteors, with the northern Taurids velocity at 29 km per second, and the southern at 27 km per second. 
The Taurids produce bright slow moving orange fireballs. 
At maximum in November, both showers will peak at about ZHR rates of 5 meteors per hour. 
The Southern Taurids will peak around the 5th November and the Northern Taurids the 12th November. Both these meteor showers are part of the Taurid stream which in turn has been associated with Comet Encke.



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Other notable Messier objects

M57 This smallest planetary nebula in the Messier Catalogue is the famous Ring nebula in the constellation Lyra. 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. Can be seen in binoculars as a faint star like point of light.
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 center. 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.
M71 Lying in Sagitta, this globular cluster appears as a faint oval hazy patch of light in a telescope. This is a very difficult but possible binocular object, requiring dark skies and trained eyes.
M30 This globular cluster in Capricornus is tough but very possible to see in binoculars as a faint fuzzy star. Telescopes show a small fuzzy ball of light, bright in the center fading to the edges.
M72 This is a small faint globular cluster in Aquarius. Look for a faint oval patch of light, gradually brighter towards
the middle. A very difficult binocular object.
M73 This asterism is located near M72 in Aquarius. In a low power telescope view it looks like a very small fuzzy
patch of light at first glance. When stared at it reveals itself as a small collection of stars. Medium to high power shows the view best described by Messier "cluster of three or four stars...containing very little nebulosity"

Lyra contains the bright star Vega, the fifth brightest star in the sky. It is a blue-white star, magnitude of 0.03, that lies 26 light years away. Vega is a young star only a few hundred million years old, and is surrounded by a cold,dark protoplanetary disc

Nearby, a pair of binoculars will show the lovely double-double starsystem called Epsilon Lyrae up and to the left of Vega.

Capricornus, the Sea Goat Sign of the Zodiac for birth dates between 22 December and 19 January; it is the leading constellation of the "wet" or "water" constellations. Capricornus has a symmetrical shape resembling a bikini bottom, but the stars of Capricornus are very faint with no star brighter than the third magnitude. Capricornus appears low in the southern sky (never at higher altitudes). The Tropic of Capricorn (23.5 degrees South latitude) is named after Capricornus; on 22 December (on average), the Sun is directly overhead (at the zenith) at Noon along the Tropic of Capricorn. In Mythology, the Greeks identified Capricornus with Pan, the god of nature, who was pictured as half-man, half-goat. In fear, Pan escaped the giant Typhon by leaping into the Nile River and changing his tail to that of a fish. This is the origin of the word, "panic."



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