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Saturn-Mars Conjunction
by Simon at 17:24 15/06/06 (Blogs::Simon)
Look out tonight in the low western part of the sky for Saturn and Mars very close together.
Text from the iCal astronomy calendar that keeps me informed of this kind of stuff:

Begin with the strikingly close Saturn-Mars pair just 1.2 degrees apart in the west, and Mercury, Pollux, and Castor in the WNW, to the pair's lower right. Next, find bright Jupiter in the southern sky. The lineup of four planets, Mercury-Mars-Saturn-Jupiter, spans 110 degrees across the sky. Near that line, between Saturn and Jupiter, look for the bright stars Regulus in Leo and Spica in Virgo. Extend the line past Jupiter to find Antares, heart of Scorpius, in the southeast. The Big Dipper helps find several stars: A line extended from the Pointer stars of the Dipper's bowl leads to Polaris, the North Star, in the north. The Big Dipper's curved handle, extended, leads you to Arcturus, high in the south, and Spica, west of Jupiter. Water leaking through the bottom of the Dipper's bowl would trickle onto the back of Leo, the Lion, in the west. Next, look between east and northeast to find the bright Summer Triangle of Vega, Deneb, and Altair. Finally, as the sky darkens, use binoculars or a telescope to see the faint stars of the Beehive cluster surrounding Mars.

And Saturn and Mars are even closer together on Saturday night - only 0.6° apart.


JPG image (20 K) View through binoculars
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