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    Articles > February 2008
 
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  Sky Calendar -- February 2008
1 Venus 0.59° from Jupiter at 12h UT (32° from Sun, morning sky). Visible together in a low-power telescope. Mags. -3.9 and -1.9.
1 Moon very near Antares at 18h UT (morning sky). Occultation visible from Australia, New Zealand and southern South America.
Occultation of Antares (IOTA)
4 Moon near Jupiter and Venus at 10h UT (morning sky).
6 Mercury at inferior conjunction with the Sun at 18h UT. Mercury passes into the morning sky.
7 New Moon at 3:44 UT. Start of lunation 1053.
7 Annular Solar Eclipse visible along a narrow path across Antarctica and the southern Pacific. Partial phases visible from New Zealand and southeastern Australia. Greatest eclipse at 3:55 UT. WARNING: NEVER LOOK AT THE SUN -- it will instantly damage your eyes! Use a pinhole in a card to project the Sun's image onto a surface.
Annular Solar Eclipse, 7 February 2008 (NASA)
Annular Solar Eclipse, 7 February 2008 (PDF) (NASA)
14 Moon at perigee (closest to Earth) at 1h UT (370,219 km; 32.3').
14 First Quarter Moon at 3:33 UT.
14 Moon near the Pleiades at 13h UT (evening sky).
16 Moon near Mars at 8h UT (evening sky). Mag. -0.2.
18 Moon near Pollux at 7h UT (evening sky).
19 Moon near Beehive cluster (M44) at 8h UT.
20 Moon very near Regulus at 24h UT (midnight sky). Occultation visible from southern South America.
Occultation of Regulus (IOTA)
21 Full Moon at 3:30 UT. The full Moon of February is called the Snow Moon, Hunger Moon or Wolf Moon.
Full Moon Names (Wikipedia)
21 Total Eclipse of the Moon begins at 3:00 UT and ends at 3:52 UT. Mid-eclipse at 3:26 UT. Partial phases begin at 1:43 UT and end at 5:09 UT. The Moon will appear red-orange in color during totality (the Earth's shadow). Entire eclipse visible from North and South America, western Europe and Africa.
Total Eclipse of the Moon, 21 February 2008 (NASA)
Total Eclipse of the Moon, 21 February 2008 (PDF) (NASA)
21 Moon near Saturn at 9h UT (midnight sky). Mag. +0.2.
24 Saturn at opposition (opposite the Sun) at 9h UT. Visible all night long, the ringed planet is at its brightest (mag. +0.2) and closest (disk diameter 20.0") all year. Saturn's rings appear magnificent even in a small telescope.
Give me 5 minutes. I'll give you Saturn in 2008. (Earth & Sky)
25 Moon near Spica at 6h UT (morning sky).
27 Mercury 1.1° from Venus at 9h UT (morning sky). Mags. +0.3 & -3.9.
28 Moon at apogee (farthest from Earth) at 1h UT (distance 404,443 km; angular size 29.6').
29 Moon very near Antares at 2h UT (morning sky).
Occultation of Antares (IOTA)
29 Last Quarter Moon at 2:18 UT.
The Zodiacal Light. Late February (northern hemisphere) is the best time of the year to look for the zodiacal light (caused by sunlight reflected off meteoric dust in the plane of the solar system). Choose a clear, moonless night, about 1 to 2 hours after sunset, and look along the ecliptic in the west for a large triangular-shaped glow extending up from the horizon.
Zodiacal Light (Wikipedia)
All times Universal Time (UT). USA Eastern Standard Time = UT - 5 hours.

Clear skies till next month!

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