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Offline koootzz

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April 2011 Sky Guide
« on: 19:24:21, 31 March, 2011 »

April Sky Guide

New moon on the 3rd, full moon on the 18th. There will be a 1.9% illuminated crescent visible on the 2nd, this will be particularly difficult to capture so see if you can do it! There's an easier one the day before which is 5.3% illuminated. The lunar X will be visible on the 10th around 19.37. Maximum libration is reached on the 16th.
The Lyrids reach their maximum on the 23rd but will be visible from the 15th.


Mercury is not observable this month.

Venus will be visible in the early morning, becoming earlier as the month passes.

Mars is not observable this month.

Jupiter is not well placed this month although it does begin to rise before the sun towards the end of the month.

Saturn is visible through the night in Virgo and reaches opposition on the 4th (1am).

Comets visible this month (to mag 12)

There are no comets brighter than mag 12 forecast this month.

ISS Passes

The ISS makes daily passes throughout April, from an hour or so before dawn at the start of the month to late evening at the end.
For 10 day listings for your location please check (free registration required).

Space shuttle

Endeavour is scheduled to launch on the 20th just after midnight UK time.

Deep Sky

Best deep sky imaging is from the 1st to the 11th and from the 25th on.

Spring is galaxy season so naturally attention is turned to Leo and Virgo for their abundance of galaxies but don't overlook the globular clusters such as M5, M13, M53 and M3. These are good targets for the beginning imager as good results can be had with less exposure time than the galaxies.

Gravity highlights

The Lyrid meteor shower will have started so there should be a good chance to capture one, the Alpha Virginids will also be underway but these have a very slow hourly rate.
The moon will reach maximum libration on the 16th so have a try at the lunar North Pole or Mare Frigoris.
ISS is due to pass on the 16th at 04.31 and on the 17th at 21.21, although it will be low in the South on both passes. The pass on the 16th should follow a line between Antares and Spica.

vixen 60s, modded 1000D, modded 300D, DSI I, 10" dob (work in progress), some other bits and a stupendous talent for attracting cloud!

Offline swashy

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Re: April Sky Guide
« Reply #1 on: 20:26:08, 31 March, 2011 »
 Thanks Leigh, lunar X the day after my birthday, so hopefully it will be a mental reminder for me, as I keep missing the opportunity  :thumbup:

Imagine...  above us only sky!

Offline koootzz

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Re: April Sky Guide
« Reply #2 on: 12:40:32, 29 April, 2011 »
**STS-134 Update**

There are two predicted passes of the shuttle this evening, the 1st at approx 21.05 crossing from West to East.
The 2nd is at approx 22.36 but is low in the West.
vixen 60s, modded 1000D, modded 300D, DSI I, 10" dob (work in progress), some other bits and a stupendous talent for attracting cloud!


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