2020, October 2-3: Moon, Mars Together

On the night of October 2-3, 2020, the moon appears near Mars.

by Jeffrey L. Hunt

Mars appears with the moon on two nights during October 2020, the night of October 2-3 and October 29.

On the evening of October 2-3, look for the moon about two hours after sunset in the eastern sky.  The bright moon is nearly 16 days past its new phase and 98% illuminated. 

Mars and Moon, October 2, 2020
2020, October 2: About two hours after sunset, look for bright Mars 1.7° to the upper left of the bright moon.

Planet is is the bright star that is 1.7° to the upper left of the lunar orb.

As the night unfolds, the pair seems to move westward as Earth rotates.  They appear in the southern sky about 2 a.m. CDT on October 3.  As the new day progresses, the pair is in the western sky.

Moon and Mars, October 3, 2020
2020, October 3: Farther west, the moon – over 26° in altitude in the west-southwest – is 2.8° to the upper left of Mars.

About an hour before sunrise, they are about one-third of the way up in the sky in the west-southwest.  At this time, the moon is 2.8° to the upper left of the Red Planet.

During the night, the moon moves slowly eastward as Mars  inches westward compared to its starfield.

Read more about the planets during October.

2021, May 13: Brilliant Venus, Mercury, and the crescent moon in the evening sky.

2021, August 3: Four Evening Planets: Venus, Mars, Saturn, Jupiter

August 3, 2021:  Four planets appear in the evening sky.  Brilliant Evening Star Venus and dim Mars are in the west after sunset.  A little later during the evening, Saturn and Jupiter are easily visible in the southeast.

Saturn (NASA)

2021, August 2: Saturn at Opposition

August 2, 2021: Saturn is at opposition with the sun.  Earth is between the sun and the planet.

2020, July 17: The crescent moon appears near Venus before sunrise. The night portion of the moon is gently illuminated by earthshine.

2021: August 1 – 6: Morning Moon, Bright Stars

August 1 – 6, 2021:  The morning moon wanes toward its New moon phase in the eastern sky.  It passes the bright stars that are prominent in the evening sky during the winter season in the northern hemisphere.  The stars have been making their first appearances in the morning sky during summer.  At this hour, Procyon and bright Sirius are the last stellar duo to appear.

2021, July 8: The flowers celebrate summer.

2021, August 6: Summer’s Midpoint

August 6, 2021:  In the northern hemisphere, summer’s midpoint occurs today at 6:27 p.m. CDT.

The moon and Spica, December 10, 2020

2021, July 31: Morning Sky, Moon, Mira, Uranus

July 31, 2021:  The slightly gibbous moon, nearing its Last Quarter phase, is in the southeast as morning twilight begins.  It is near the planet Uranus, easily within reach of a binocular.  Mira, a variable star, reaches its brightest next month.

Categories: Astronomy, Sky Watching

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