Monday 10th to Sunday 16th October 2022
Last week I talked about a waxing Gibbous Moon - waxing because it was getting brighter as it headed towards a Full Moon. Now we are past the Full Moon, it appears as a waning Gibbous Moon.
If you go outside around 5am on Wednesday 12th, a 94%-lit waning Gibbous Moon will be towards the south west, with planet Uranus a little above it and to the left. Uranus will have a magnitude of about +5.6, so in theory at least, it could just be visible with the naked eye from a very dark location, BUT there will be light pollution from the Moon meaning that you should really dig out those binoculars or a small telescope.
If you aim towards the south instead, you will see the constellation of Orion with planet Mars above it. Half way between Mars and the Moon will be the Pleiades open cluster of stars sitting just above the constellation of Taurus that has the bright star Aldebaran in it.
There are several interesting astronomical events coming up later this month, including the Orionids meteor shower and a partial eclipse of the Sun, but for now I am going to make another blatant advertisement for the two astronomy lectures and star parties that I am running at the Ham Hill Visitor Centre. They are taking place on Friday 21st October and Friday 18th November, with a talk at 7pm, followed by refreshments at 8pm before we venture outside to have a look at the night sky.
Screenshots courtesy of Stellarium
Copyright Adrian Dening and Radio Ninesprings 2022