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EarthSky Tonight—August 17, Antares – Fire Star – near moon
Posted By admin On August 17, 2010 @ 7:29 am In Earth & Sky | Comments Disabled
Courtesy of EarthSky
A Clear Voice for Science
 You have got about another month to see a uniquely summer star, Antares in the constellation Scorpius, in the evening. It is the brightest star near the waxing gibbous moon  tonight, in the southern sky as night begins. The moon and Antares will drift westward throughout the night, to set around midnight.
Antares sets some 4 minutes earlier with each passing night. By late September, Antares will be tough to spot in the southwestern twilight after sunset.
In ancient Chinese thought, the summer season was associated with the direction south, with the element fire, and with the color red. No wonder, then, that this reddish star in the south – beautiful Antares – was considered the Fire Star of the ancient Chinese.
To us in the northern hemisphere, Antares appears as a bright reddish star that rides relatively low in the south all summer. We know it as a great ball of gases, a thermonuclear cauldron radiating unimaginable amounts of energy into the blackness and vastness of space.
Yet, to us – as to the ancient Chinese – Antares appears so near the southern horizon that we must view it through a great thickness of air. The air through which we view Antares causes this star to twinkle rapidly! On any summer evening, if you see a bright red star low in the south that’s twinkling fiercely . . . it’s probably Antares.
Written by Deborah Byrd 
StarDate Online 
Sky and Telescope 
National Geographic 
Space Com 
Amazing Space 
Scope City 
Article printed from Recorder Online: http://www.berthoudrecorder.com
URL to article: http://www.berthoudrecorder.com/2010/08/17/earthsky-tonight%e2%80%94august-17-antares-%e2%80%93-fire-star-%e2%80%93-near-moon/
URLs in this post:
 www.EarthSky.org: http://www.EarthSky.org
 Image: http://www.berthoudrecorder.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/moon-Aug-17.gif
 Image: http://www.berthoudrecorder.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/10aug17_430.png
 waxing gibbous moon: http://earthsky.org/tonightpost/moon-phases/waxing-gibbous
 Deborah Byrd: http://earthsky.org/author/deborahbyrd/
 Astronomy Picture of the Day from NASA/JPL: http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/
 CHANDRA Photo Album: http://chandra.harvard.edu/photo/
 U.S. Naval Observator Astronomical Information cente: http://www.usno.navy.mil/USNO/astronomical-applications/astronomical-information-center/astronomical-information-center
 StarDate Online: http://stardate.org/
 Sky and Telescope: http://www.skyandtelescope.com/observing/ataglance/
 National Geographic: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/
 Space Com: http://www.space.com/nightsky/
 Amazing Space: http://amazing-space.stsci.edu/tonights_sky/
 The York County Astronomical Society: http://www.ycas.org/tonights_sky.htm
 Scope City: http://www.scopecity.net/
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