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    Articles > November 2002
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The Night Sky Planisphere

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  Sky Calendar -- November 2002
4 New Moon at 20:34 UT. Beginning of lunation 988.
4 Moon at perigee (closest to Earth) at 1h UT (distance 358,153 km; angular size 33.4').
5 Southern Taurid Meteor Shower peak. May produce the occasional bright fireball.
11 First Quarter Moon at 20:52 UT.
12 Northern Taurid Meteor Shower peak. May produce the occasional bright fireball.
16 Moon at apogee (furthest from Earth) at 11h UT (distance 405,797 km; angular size 29.5').
19 Leonid Meteor Shower peaks. The first peak is at 4:03 UT (11:03pm EST, 18 Nov) and favors western Africa, as well as western and central parts of Europe. However, observers in northeastern USA and the Maritime Provinces of Canada should see several bright fast-moving meteors streak across the entire sky (Earth-grazers that skim through our atmosphere). A less intense second peak is predicted to arrive at 10:40 UT (5:40am EST, 19 Nov) and favors all of North America. The two peaks correspond with the Earth's passage through debris fields left behind by Comet 55P/Tempel-Tuttle in 1767 and 1866. Skywatchers are advised to commence observing about 1 hour before each peak. Dress warmly and seat yourself comfortably. No special equipment is required--just your eyes. Many of the fainter meteors will be washed out by the presence of a full Moon in the sky, but this should not deter skywatchers. Leonids are bright and easily seen even in twilight. Don't miss this rare opportunity as the next Leonid meteor storm is not expected until 2098!
20 Full Moon at 1:33 UT. The full Moon of November is known as the Frosty Moon in old almanacs.
24 Moon 3.0° from Pollux at 13h UT.
27 Last Quarter Moon at 15:46 UT.
Also... Saturn (magnitude ­0.3) now rises by mid-evening and is best observed from about midnight onwards when a telescope will provide a spectacular view. Jupiter (magnitude ­2.0), brighter than Saturn, rises around midnight. Venus (magnitude ­4.5), much brighter than Jupiter, and just past inferior conjunction, climbs rapidly up in the dawn sky. Visible low in the east by 10 November.

Clear skies till next month!

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