Photo of the Week. A convective column of warm air
produces a rising tower of cloud.
Astronomy news for the week starting Friday, September 26,
The Moon fades early in the week through its waning crescent phase, and turns to new the
morning of Monday the 29th well before Sunrise. Try to find the very thin crescent in the eastern twilight
sky the morning of Saturday, September 27. Then see if you can
to the left and a bit down from it. During the rest of the week
the Moon will have flipped to the other side as a western-twilight
waxing crescent, the first real view of
it coming the night of Wednesday, October 1st. Far down in the
southwest, the Moon will underlie Venus, which is
slowly becoming prominent. By the next evening, the planet will be
directly to the right of the Moon.
The Sun having passed
the autumnal equinox in Virgo last Monday, September 22, we
are now on the other side of
Fall. Watch the progression of sunset to the southwest, the
Sun moving at its maximum southerly rate of 0.4 degree
per day. With the point of sunrise moving southward as well, the
early mornings are becoming ever darker, allowing early risers to
see the stars.
slowly moving to the east against the starry background north of
the stars of Sagittarius's Little Milk Dipper, continues to
dominate the southwestern evening sky. Setting ever earlier, the
giant planet now goes down around midnight Daylight Time. With
Venus setting ever later, the two are headed for a heavenly
conjunction, just two degrees apart, at the end of November. Once
you locate Venus (which in a while will not be difficult), keep
your eye on their approach to each other.