July 2014
S M T W T F S
« Jun    
 12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
2728293031  
News for Norther Colorado and the world

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Earthsky Tonight—June 20: Waxing gibbous moon closer to Spica

Courtesy of EarthSky
A Clear Voice for Science
www.EarthSky.org

phase June 20 Earthsky Tonight—June 20: Waxing gibbous moon closer to Spica10jun20 430 Earthsky Tonight—June 20: Waxing gibbous moon closer to SpicaDid you happen to see yesterday’s chart? If so – or if you looked in the actual sky during the evening hours – you might have noticed that last night’s moon was between the planet Saturn and the star Spica. This evening, the moon shines by the star Spica in the constellation Virgo.

The moon was to the east of Spica last night. Tonight, if you look, you will find the moon much closer to Spica, the brightest star in the constellation Virgo the Maiden. If you are interested in knowing why, look back at yesterday’s program.

You do not have to wait until after sunset to see tonight’s moon. You can see the moon in the late afternoon today in a blue daytime sky. The moon, now in a waxing gibbous phase, will be visible in the southern sky just before sunset. It will appear as a pale ghost of a moon, possibly swimming among white puffy clouds.

Why can you see today’s moon during the day? Because the moon moves in orbit around Earth, it is in the daytime sky as often as the night sky. It is not unusual for the sun’s glare to hide the daytime moon from view. However, right now the moon is well away from the sun on the sky’s dome – note that it is in the south tonight, when the sun is going down in the west-northwest.

What’s more, the moon is showing us a large fraction of its lighted half now, and so it is easy to see the moon in daylight today. The moon will be full on June 26.

Related:

June 21 solstice ushers in northernmost sunrises, sunsets

North and South America to see lunar eclipse before dawn on June 26

Everything you need to know: June solstice 2010

Written by Deborah Byrd

Comet McNaught c/2009 R1 visible in early morning

Astronomy Picture of the Day from NASA/JPL

CHANDRA Photo Album

U.S. Naval Observator Astronomical Information center

StarDate Online

Sky and Telescope

National Geographic

Space Com

Amazing Space

The York County Astronomical Society

Scope City

James S McDonnell Planetarium

Print This Post Print This Post