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Post by Chicago Astronomer Joe on Oct 2, 2006 8:03:12 GMT -6
October 2006 AstroCalendar
10/3 Neptune is 3.0 degrees north-northwest of the Moon at 9:00
10/5 Uranus is 0.45 degree north-northwest of the Moon at 0:00 - an occultation takes place in most of central Africa and the southern portion of South America; asteroid 1 Ceres, now also known as a dwarf planet, is stationary at 20:00; the Moon is at the ascending node (longitude 355.4 degrees) at 22:14
10/6 A minimum lunar libration of 0.7 degree occurs at 5:00; the Moon is at perigee, subtending 33'26" from a distance of 357,411 km, at 14:00 - since this perigee is the third closest of 2006 and occurs only some 12 hours before the Full Moon, extra large tides will result
10/7 Full Moon, known as the Hunter's or Blood Moon and this year's Harvest Moon, occurs at 3:13
10/8 The peak of the Draconid or Giacobinid meteor shower (rate is variable) occurs at 23:00
10/10 The 86% illuminated waning gibbous Moon occults many of the stars in the bright open cluster M45 (the Pleiades) - the midpoint of the event is approximately 5:00; the Moon is 0.75 degree northwest of the center of M45 at 6:00; the Moon is 10.5 degrees north of the first magnitude star Aldebaran at 22:00
10/12 A maximum lunar libration of 10.4 degrees occurs at 11:00
10/14 Last Quarter Moon occurs at 0:26; The Moon is 2.1 degrees south- southwest of the first magnitude star Pollux at 5:00; Mars is 2.5 degrees north-northeast of the first magnitude star Spica at 17:00
10/15 The Moon is 2.3 degrees north-northeast of the bright open cluster M44 (Praesepe or the Beehive) in Cancer at 9:00
10/16 Saturn is 2 degrees south of the Moon at 14:00; Venus is 1.6 degrees north of the first magnitude star Antares at 18:00
10/17 Mercury reaches greatest eastern elongation (24.8 degrees) at 4:00; the Moon is 1.8 degrees north-northeast of the first magnitude star Regulus at 6:00
10/19 The Moon is at the descending node (longitude 175.2 degrees) at 9:34; the Moon is at apogee, subtending 29'26" from a distance of 406,074 km, at 14:00 ; Venus is 3.2 degrees north-northeast of Spica at 15:00; the Moon is 0.33 degree south-southeast of asteroid 3 Juno at 18:00 - an occultation takes place in southern South America and the Hawaiian Islands; a minimum lunar libration of 0.9 degree occurs at 20:00
10/21 Mercury is at its greatest heliocentric latitude south (-7.0 degrees) at 4:00; the peak of the Orionid meteor shower (10 to 20/hour) occurs at 15:00; the Moon is 0.51 degree south of Spica at 20:00
10/22 Venus is 3.9 degrees north-northeast of the Moon at 1:00; Venus, Mars, and the Moon lie within a 4 degree diameter circle at 3:00; New Moon (lunation 1037) occurs at 5:14; Mars is 3.3 degrees north-northeast of the Moon at 5:00; Mercury (magnitude 0.1) is 3.9 degrees south-southwest of Jupiter (magnitude -1.7) at 13:00
10/23 Mars is in conjunction with the Sun at 7:00
10/24 Jupiter is 5.2 degrees north-northeast of the Moon at 5:00; Mercury is 1.3 degrees north-northeast of the Moon at 7:00
10/25 Venus is 0.67 degree north-northeast of Mars at 7:00; the Moon is 0.48 degree south-southeast of Antares at 14:00
10/26 Comet 4P/Faye reaches opposition at 4:00
10/27 A maximum lunar libration of 9.1 degrees occurs at 6:00; Venus is in superior conjunction with the Sun at 17:00
10/28 Mercury is stationary in right ascension, with retrograde (westward) motion to commence, at 0:00
10/29 Neptune is stationary in right ascension, with direct or prograde (eastward) motion to commence, at 4:00; Daylight Saving Time (DST) ends at 6:00; First Quarter Moon occurs at 21:25
10/30 Neptune is 2.9 degrees north-northwest of the Moon at 17:00
10/31 The Sun enters Libra (longitude 217.62 degrees) at 5:00
The Moon reaches its greatest northern declination on October 12 (+29 degrees) and its greastest southern declination on October 27 (-29 degrees). Luna occults M45 (the Pleiades) on the evening of October 9. Times and dates for the lunar light rays predicted to occur this month are available at www.lunar- occultations.com/rlo/rays/rays.htm
During the first part of the month, the zodiacal light may be visible from dark locations in the eastern sky before dawn.
Because Mercury undergoes an unfavorable eastern elongation this month for northern observers, it sets soon after the Sun. The Messenger of the Gods is in conjunction with Jupiter on October 25 and October 28.
After the early part of the month, Venus lies on the far side of the Sun and cannot be seen again until early December.
Mars is in conjunction in October and is likewise not readily observable until December.
Jupiter is visible for a short time after sunset in early October. It then disappears into the glare of the Sun, reaching conjunction on October 22. The King of the Planets is positioned to the upper right of Mercury in the west-southwest at twilight.
At the end of October, Saturn rises in east-northeast by 12:30 a.m. Titan, its eighth-magnitude satellite, is due north of the Ringed Planet on the morning of October 16. It's due south of Saturn on the mornings of October 8 and October 24.
During the first half of October, Uranus is within a half of a degree of the 3.7-magnitude star Lambda Aquarii.
This month Neptune is located about half way between 4.3-magnitude Iota Capricorni and 5.3-magnitude 29 Capricorni.
Poorly placed for telescopic observation, Pluto is located in the southwestern sky during evening twilight.
Asteroid 7 Iris shines at 7.5 magnitude as it travels along the border of Taurus and Aries.
During October, the recently discovered comet C/2006 M4 (SWAN) travels eastward through Canes Venatici, northern Bootes, and into the western portion of Hercules. It may be as bright as sixth or seventh magnitude. On the evening of October 17, the comet is just north of Gamma Bootis. It is about three degrees south of the globular cluster M13 on October 28.
The periodic comet 4P/Faye glides by the tenth magnitude elliptical galaxy NGC 821 as it passes through Aries.
Chicago Astronomer Joe Founder, Administrator and Chief Astronomer
Telescope/Observatory Docent Facilitator Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum
Astronomy Instructor Instituto Del Progresso/IHSCA
Astronomy Program Instructor British International School of Chicago /Lincoln Park Campus
Resident Astronomer Chicago Park District Nature Oasis/Night Out in the Parks/ 606 Trail