What did you see in the sky tonight?

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muneca1289
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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by muneca1289 » Sun Aug 07, 2011 7:41 am

all i saw was stars some i could identify some of them but others i could not. i did see a orange type of star but i don't know and if a star shines different colors what does that mean? i have been trying to figure that out. :-?

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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by Beyond » Thu Aug 11, 2011 3:15 am

At about 9:21 EST, to the west north-west, i saw just about the biggest brightest white glow of a meteor passing through the earths atmosphere that i've ever seen. Which hasn't really been all that many. In the 2-3 seconds that it lasted, it shed a few parts. I should think that if it landed instead of just passing through, it would have been quite noticeable. But then, i'm no meteor expert. I just like to watch them go flying by. YEE-HAA :cowboy:
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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by owlice » Thu Aug 11, 2011 3:24 am

Cooooool!!!!!
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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by Ann » Thu Aug 11, 2011 3:48 am

Wow!!! :D :D :D

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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by owlice » Fri Aug 12, 2011 5:52 am

One Perseid for me, and a whole lot of moonlight.
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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by Sam » Sat Aug 13, 2011 6:18 pm

I guess this was a few nights ago now, but after seeing the submissions here and here, I am now convinced that I was lucky enough to happen to be looking at the moon through binoculars just as it occulted Pi Sagittarii!
(I had been confused due to a misreading of the timing charts at http://www.lunar-occultations.com/iota/ ... zc2797.htm.)

Once again in the right place at the right time. 8-)
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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by Ann » Tue Sep 06, 2011 2:30 am

It's a brilliant pre-dawn morning here, and the sky, while not so dark-looking and full of drifting clouds, nevertheless allows the stars to shine brightly. I didn't know that Mars was in Gemini, not far from Pollux and Castor, but a quick check with my binoculars confirmed the very reddish color of this planet, so it had to be Mars. And Jupiter was absolutely brilliant, almost unnaturally yellow-whitishly bright very, very high in the south. All the little "doubles" in Lyra stood out so clearly - epsilon, zeta, delta.

What a morning.

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Draconids!

Post by Ann » Sat Oct 08, 2011 7:49 pm

Tonight was the night of the Draconids, and I've seen five definite ones. I'm giving up, now, though, because the sky is getting cloudier.

One of the Draconids was really bright, but the others were rather faint. The skies over central Malmö are light-polluted during the best of nights, but tonight the Moon is almost full, washing out the sky terribly.

When the sky is so washed-out, the bright lights become almost unnaturally bright. Arcturus was doing a fair imitation of Sirius low in the northwest: it was strikingly bright and twinkling like crazy. It was really reddish, though, so no one could mistake it for Sirius. Anyway, this isn't the first time I've seen Arcturus looking surprisingly bright. I can remember an early morning that was really misty, so that the mist blotted out the faint stars, and when I looked out at the sky from my balcony, I could see one star. One only. Crazily enough, it looked fairly bright. Wouldn't you know it was Arcturus?

Otherwise, Jupiter was piercing the skies like a rock-steady search-light, and Capella was to the left of it, twinkling where Jupiter was still. Between Jupiter and Capella was the Alpha Persei moving group, which is always a very pretty sight. Vega was high in the sky, looking friendly and bluish.

Airplanes were buzzing about like always. Kastrup, the airport of Copenhagen, is less than twenty miles away to the west. Sturup, the airport of Malmö, is perhaps twenty miles away to the east. I saw a strange sight which must have been an airplane: a bright light, about as bright as Capella, appeared some distance to the right of it, and then it just disappeared. I never saw it move.

Oh well, I'm off to bed now. Good night!

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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by The Alien » Wed Oct 12, 2011 4:39 am

Clouds, clouds, rain, and more clouds :cry:

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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by Ann » Thu Oct 13, 2011 7:35 am

It was a bright clear morning with an almost full Moon. The Moon and brilliant Jupiter made a pretty pair in the west. In the southwest, Orion was high in the sky, with Sirius to the lower left of it, very bright. As dawn progressed. Orion was washed out, and only the winter triangle - Sirius, Betelgeuse, and Procyon of Canis MInor - remained, with Rigel, where Orion had been. Then Procyon, Rigel and Betelgeuse were washed out too, and only Sirius remained, along with the Moon and Jupiter. Finally it was almost full daylight, but the Moon was still prominent, gliding northwards. I had to strain to make out Jupiter - ah, there it was!
Image
Once I saw the full Moon set in the blue descending Earth shadow below the pink belt of Venus. It looked something like this, only more amazing, as the blue Earth shadow looked really "thick" and opaque. Yet there was the Moon, shining right through it so clearly.

Today I saw a beautiful belt of Venus and sinking Earth shadow below the almost full Moon, but it was clear that the Earth shadow would sink below the horizon before the Moon sank that low. It was a nice sight, nevertheless.



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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by TNT » Sun Oct 16, 2011 3:52 am

wonderboy wrote:
Chris Peterson wrote:
wonderboy wrote:Nah, I didn't I'm always looking up as well and it seemed strange to me, I hadn't seen it before. I'm assuming it was venus, because it was definetly the brightest thing in the sky I'll tell you.
Venus is in the early evening sky in the west. If you saw something in the east, it wasn't Venus. The most common thing people see close to the horizon as a new star is an airplane flying towards them with its landing lights on. That can look like a bright, unmoving star and last for several minutes (the plane might be 50 miles or more away). Of course, if you see it on another night, it probably is something astronomical.



I seen it a few nights in a row, I'll check if its there tonight and let you know. It definetely wasn't a plane with its lights on Chris.

Thanks.


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:?: Arcturus? Regulus? Saturn? Spica even? :?:

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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by TNT » Sun Oct 16, 2011 4:06 am

muneca1289 wrote: if a star shines different colors what does that mean? i have been trying to figure that out. :-?
This usually means poor atmospheric seeing conditions. It's called "twinkling" when a star appears to look different colors and becomes fainter and brighter.

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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by Ann » Sun Oct 16, 2011 5:49 am

Sam, I've been looking at some of your posts, and wow! You've sure seen some amazing sights!!! :D :D :D

Keep watching the skies for us, and keep telling us what you've seen! :D

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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by Ann » Sun Oct 16, 2011 6:25 am

TNT wrote:
muneca1289 wrote: if a star shines different colors what does that mean? i have been trying to figure that out. :-?
This usually means poor atmospheric seeing conditions. It's called "twinkling" when a star appears to look different colors and becomes fainter and brighter.
In my experience, stars are only seen to do a lot of twinkling if they are bright and relatively close to the horizon. Here in Scandinavia Sirius never rises very high above the horizon, and it is a very classic twinkler. When you look at Sirius through a telescope when it is in one of its most twinkling moods, it almost seems to fire a constant barrage of fireworks from its "surface" (which we can't see, of course - the surface, I mean).

Recently, bright Arcturus was close to the horizon when I saw it. It was twinkling away like crazy, but it was a misty night, too. The mist would have increased the twinkling. But while the overall twinkling of Sirius is "white", with just a slight preponderance of blue "flashes" over green, yellow and red ones, the Arcturus "light flashes" were almost all yellow and red. But while Arcturus is intrinsically a lot redder than Sirius, it was also lower on the horizon than Sirius usually is when I observe it.
Light sources that are close to the horizon become definitely reddened - just think of what happens to the setting Sun. Once I actually saw normally white Venus looking brightly orange when it was very close to the horizon!

The Sun isn't just reddened when it's close to the horizon, but its shape looks slightly distorted, too. Often it looks "squashed" near the horizon, even though it looks quite round when it is higher above the horizon. And even the Sun can "flash" near the horizon - just think of the famous "green flash"!

The reason for all these strange effects is the simple fact that a light source which is seen near the horizon has to travel thorugh a particularly thick layer of atmosphere to reach us on the ground. The molecules in the atmosphere sactter the photons from the light source this way and that, causing the light source to "twinkle", and most of the blue photons get scattered away completely, causing reddening.

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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by Chris Peterson » Sun Oct 16, 2011 2:07 pm

Ann wrote:In my experience, stars are only seen to do a lot of twinkling if they are bright and relatively close to the horizon.
Ha! You need to see the sky from Colorado sometime, where we are usually under the jet stream. Even the planets twinkle here, and most of the time, every star in the sky- regardless of position or brightness. Even through a telescope I sometimes see twinkling- and a telescope almost always removes that effect,even from the brightest stars on the unsteadiest nights.
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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by Beyond » Mon Oct 24, 2011 12:28 am

At about 8:11pm East Coast time, a little south of North East Connecticut, for about a good 3-seconds, i saw a decent sized meteor streak through the atmosphere from east to west. I don't know how long it was actually visible though, the roof was in the way. I first saw it as a very bright white ball of light, that almost changed to completely bright yellow, which made it look much dimmer before exiting the atmosphere.
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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by Chris Peterson » Mon Oct 24, 2011 3:37 am

Beyond wrote:At about 8:11pm East Coast time, a little south of North East Connecticut, for about a good 3-seconds, i saw a decent sized meteor streak through the atmosphere from east to west. I don't know how long it was actually visible though, the roof was in the way. I first saw it as a very bright white ball of light, that almost changed to completely bright yellow, which made it look much dimmer before exiting the atmosphere.
The Orionid meteor shower is currently active, but at 8:11 pm local time the radiant was still below the horizon. Most likely you just caught a nice sporadic fireball. Sporadics are active at this time of year, too.

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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by Beyond » Mon Oct 24, 2011 4:41 am

I like sporadics :!: They're bigger then what you usually see in showers, although i have to judge from fading memory. It's been a good 40 years since I've seen any part of a meteor shower.
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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by neufer » Mon Oct 24, 2011 2:16 pm

Barska6.jpg
.



I searched for Comet Garradd over the weekend but all I could find was M13.

My 3 year old grandson Kai seemed interested, none-the-less.
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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by TNT » Wed Oct 26, 2011 3:53 am

No joke, I saw the northern lights a copule nights ago.

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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by Ann » Wed Oct 26, 2011 6:04 am

Wow, Art, that's a handsome skygazer most certainly not filling his Roche lobe!

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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by Ann » Wed Oct 26, 2011 6:05 am

TNT wrote:No joke, I saw the northern lights a copule nights ago.
Congrats, TNT! Then you have seen something I've never seen, although I live much further to the north than you do!

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Astronomer Picture Of the Day?

Post by neufer » Wed Oct 26, 2011 12:50 pm

Ann wrote:
Wow, Art, that's a handsome skygazer most certainly not filling his Roche lobe!
I beg your pardon :?
I think that all members of the thousand post club should identify themselves.
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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by TNT » Wed Oct 26, 2011 2:24 pm

What I don't get, though, is how an aurora can appear over the middle latitudes! Is Earth's magnetosphere (or something like that) being destroyed?

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Re: What did you see in the sky tonight?

Post by Chris Peterson » Wed Oct 26, 2011 2:56 pm

TNT wrote:What I don't get, though, is how an aurora can appear over the middle latitudes! Is Earth's magnetosphere (or something like that) being destroyed?
No. The more energetic the particles, and the greater the flux, the further towards the equator they can reach. This was just a particularly energetic outburst. Middle latitude auroras really aren't all that uncommon when solar activity is high.
Chris

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