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Astro Bob

Dawn Serves Up Mercury With A Splash Of Orion Sauce

6 Aug 2019, 17:46 UTC
Dawn Serves Up Mercury With A Splash Of Orion Sauce
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Look for Mercury this week in the dawn sky. It shines low in the northeast below Castor and Pollux in Gemini. I set the date on the chart to Aug. 8, but it will be in nearly the same location all week and next, growing brighter throughout. Stellarium
The aurora will do what it will do. And it didn’t do anything last night. A no-show. While that can be frustrating, especially if you made a special trip to the country in hopes of seeing it, isn’t that nature’s way? Always a little cagey, refusing to be pinned down. I hope at least you got an eyeful of the stars and the sinking moon. We had a mix of clouds of stars at my home.
Guess who’s out at dawn? Be-boppin’ Mercury, the solar system’s fastest planet, that’s who. You can see it if you’re willing to sacrifice a little sleep. There’s always the bonus of catching a sunrise, too. Mercury is currently near its greatest elongation — as far west of the sun as it gets — and plainly visible low in the northeastern sky about 45 minutes before sunrise.
To see it, find out your local sunrise time and ...

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