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EarthSky Tonight—August 29, Closest celestial trio of 2010 in late August, early September
Posted By admin On August 29, 2010 @ 11:11 am In Earth & Sky | Comments Disabled
Courtesy of EarthSky
A Clear Voice for Science
In a few more days, Venus and Mars will team up with the star Spica  to stage this year’s closest celestial trio – three heavenly bodies fitting within a circle smaller than 5 degrees in diameter. A typical binocular field covers about 5 degrees of sky, and you might catch all three snuggling within a single binocular field this early evening.
As seen from North America, the threesome cozies up even more closely on Sunday evening, and closest yet on Monday evening. If you don’t see the trio in the same binocular field after sunset today, try again on Sunday and Monday. Watch as the planets do-si-do with Spica over the next several evenings.
Unfortunately for the northern hemisphere, the threesome sets at very early evening. From mid-northern latitudes, the whole kit and caboodle sets 1.5 hours (or less) after the sun. Dazzling Venus is easy to see, but Mars and Spica tantalize at the threshold of visibility. The best viewing window opens up from around 45 to 75 minutes after sunset . Have binoculars handy!
After the trio sets in the west, look for the blazing planet Jupiter to rise in the east. After rising, this wonderfully brilliant world will be out all night long!
Written by Bruce McClure
Universe Today 
StarDate Online 
National Geographic 
Space Com 
Amazing Space 
Scope City 
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URL to article: http://www.berthoudrecorder.com/2010/08/29/earthsky-tonight%e2%80%94august-29-closest-celestial-trio-of-2010-in-late-august-early-september/
URLs in this post:
 www.EarthSky.org: http://www.EarthSky.org
 Spica: http://earthsky.org/tonightpost/brightest-stars/speed-on-to-spica-the-15th-brightest-star
 sunset: http://earthsky.org/tonightpost/astronomy-essentials/sunrisesunset-moonrisemoonset-almanacs
 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
 Universe Today: http://www.universetoday.com/
 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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