Thank you for signing up to Space. On October 17 observers in the Eastern Time Zone can see the diffuse shadow of Callisto, the crisp, round shadow of closer-in Io, and the great Red Spot all completing a group transit event between 5:25 p.m. and 7:25 p.m. EDT. On October 2, the waning moon will be positioned just 2.25 degrees to the celestial south of the planet. In the Great Lakes region, the occultation will run from approximately 1:38 a.m. to 2:26 a.m. EDT. The Lunar X is located near the terminator, about one third of the way up from the southern pole of the Moon (at 2° East, 24° South). October 9 The meteors can appear anywhere in the sky, but will seem to be travelling away from the constellation of Orion. October 23 There are many more constellation star patterns you can pick out using our easy, Basic Evening Star Map. Meanwhile our sister planet will be slowly moving sunward – starting the month in southern Leo with a very close pass of Regulus on October 2-3. Both are so bright you can’t miss them. Facing south mid-evening this month. Viewed in a telescope (inset) the planet will exhibit a waning, half-illuminated phase. Their minimum separation of 5 arc-minutes will be seen only by observers at western Asian longitudes. You need to be patient and watch for an hour or more. EVENING – This evening bright Mars is just to the upper left of the Moon. Neat things to look for on specific days in October. The area of the sky where meteors will appear to be coming from in the constellation of Orion will then be up in the east. The full moon is minus 12.7 and the sun is minus 26.8. Be sure to click on the scene for a full image. The planet will then swing sunward, towards inferior conjunction on October 25. Last Quarter Moon rises in the middle of the night, is visible in the early morning sky before sunrise and sets around mid-day. Viewed in a telescope Mars' maximum apparent disk diameter will be 22.6 arc-seconds. Keep an eye out for Earthshine – sunlight reflected from Earth that is slightly brightening the moon's darkened region. The feature is always prominent a day after first quarter and day before last quarter. New York, October Evening Star Map By midnight, the diurnal rotation of the sky and the moon's eastward orbital motion will carry the moon to just a finger's width below Mars. Go to The Evening Sky in October to compare the positions of the Big Dipper, Little Dipper and Cassiopeia with their evening positions. You should easily be able to see it. Full Moon rises around sunset, is visible all night, and sets around sunrise. Looking east an hour before sunrise. In the western sky on the evening of Thursday, October 4, Mercury (orbit shown in red) will reach its widest separation, 26 degrees east of the Sun. The best time to try to catch some meteors will be between midnight and dawn. The Moon is now half way around the Earth in its orbit. Native American and European names for this full moon all somehow have to do with the fact that the harvest is ready for a variety of foods. Our image of the day, US astronaut votes early from space station. Different humidity and amount of dust and particles filter out different wavelengths of light, hence the various colors. Scientists' best theory for why the sky sometimes changes to a yellow or greenish hue before a severe storm is that storm clouds of a certain thickness and water concentration act as a filter for the light that passes through them, according to The Guardian. Be sure to click on the scene for a full image. A meteor shower is caused by the Earth passing through the orbit or path of a comet. Bring a lawn chair or something to sit in so you can lean back and face east. Beta The Interactive Night Sky Map simulates the sky above New York on a date of your choice. With no Moon in the sky this should be a good year for this shower. October 29 Take a look at the positions of Mars and the Moon last night above. When the sun has large sunspots, they can be seen without a telescope. The star will emerge from behind the right-hand edge of the moon's disk at about 10:24 a.m. PDT. On Saturday evening, October 17 observers in the Eastern Time Zone can witness the rare event of two shadows transiting with the Great Red Spot! Meteors are sometimes called “shooting stars” and of course they are not really stars, but pieces of debris the size of grains of sand or slightly larger. This new moon, occurring only 4.5 hours after perigee (the moon's closest approach to Earth), will trigger large tides around the world. The dimmest object visible in the night sky under perfectly dark conditions is about magnitude 6.5. Be sure to click on the scene for a full image. Because this full moon occurs closest to the autumnal equinox in 2020, it is also the Harvest Moon. Its Earth-facing hemisphere that night will display its bright southern polar cap, the dark Tyrrhena Terra, Cimmeria Terra, and Sirenum Terra regions, and the lighter toned Hellas Planitia region. Some people call the second full moon in a month a Blue Moon, not because it is blue but because like “once in a blue moon” it happens somewhat infrequently. From time to time, the Great Red Spot (GRS) and the little round, black shadows cast by Jupiter's four Galilean moons are visible in backyard telescopes as they cross (or transit) the planet's disk. On the peak night, the young, crescent moon will set during evening – leaving the overnight sky dark for meteor-watching. Mars won’t appear this big and bright again until 2035.

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