Monday, May 05, 2008

Starry Starry Night

I'm staying for a few days at my mother's house in upstate New York. Although she's not in the deep countryside, there is much less light pollution here than at my home near Worcester, Massachusetts, and the sky at night is really, really dark. Last night it was also very clear and the stars were amazing. In the west there was a distinctive line of three bright objects like a giant Orion's Belt. It was made up of Castor and Pollux (the two brightest stars of Gemini) and Mars. There was also a distinctive pair higher in the southwest, made up of Regulus, the brightest star in Leo, and Saturn. Really a lovely sky with many more visible stars than I usually see at home. I had no way to take a decent picture, so I captured the screen shot here from Stellarium.

P.S. NASA's Astronomy Picture of the Day for May 10 is a nice time exposure of the Mars-Gemini lineup on May 4.

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