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Jupiter and gibbous moon close together in early morning sky

19 Aug 2011, 07:01 UTC
Jupiter and gibbous moon close together in early morning sky
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Step outside around midnight to see Jupiter and the waning gibbous moon coupling up together. The moon and Jupiter will be the brightest objects in the night sky.
Credit: Jimmy Westlake
Tonight the moon has moved in front of the constellation Aries, the Ram, with Jupiter. Jupiter should be easily spotted, even next to the brilliant moon. The moon and Jupiter will rise in the east before midnight and move into the southern sky by dawn. (As seen from the southern hemisphere, the moon and Jupiter will move into the northern sky.)
The brilliant moon has been making all but the brightest objects, such as Jupiter, hard to view. Now the moon is waning, or getting thinner, and is heading towards last quarter on the 21st. Now is a good opportunity to view some of the moon’s features through binoculars or small telescopes.
Image Credit: Velo Steve/Flickr
The terminator, the line between light and shadow on the moon, is one of the better places to see craters, ridges and rough terrain. Changes in topography are highlighted in this area of light and dark and are interesting to view. A good moon map can help you identify some of the ...

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