Astronomical Observing from Fishcreek Observing Site
 Friday 6/17/2011 at 10:17:57pm (nautical twilight)

                    Sunset:  9:04pm
       Civil twilight ends:  9:35pm
    Nautical twilight ends: 10:18pm
Astronomical twilight ends: 11:09pm

Moon Phase: 93.80% illuminated (waning gibbous)
      Rise: 10:32pm
       Age: 16d 5h 16m since last New Moon
 
Tonight, we'll have a very bright nearly full waning gibbous Moon with us when it rises at 10:32pm. We also have beautiful Saturn with its magnificent rings. Even with the bright Moon, we'll have the colorful double stars and open clusters made up of hundreds of stars that will look beautiful; the globular clusters will be fantastic as will the planetary nebula formed by dying stars. The diffuse nebula and emission nebula where stars are being born will also be visible. Galaxies will be available to us as well..

How about the planets...which ones can we see tonight? 

    Sun is obviously unavailable to us, it IS night time after all. ;^)
    Mercury isn't currently visible, but will soon be an evening object again (but difficult to see).
    Venus is now visible in the morning rising an hour before sunrise.
    Earth is what you'll be standing on as you look up. ;^)
    Mars is a morning object now, rising an hour and a half before sunrise.
    Jupiter is an early morning object rising just before 3:00am.
    Saturn is now visible in the evening and night. It sets at 2:23am.
    Uranus rises at 1:48am.
    Neptune rises a half hour after midnight.
 
  Pluto rises at sunset, but so incredibly small and dim that we can't see a thing in our telescopes!
    Moon is a bit more than two days past full and rises at 10:32pm tonight.

Click here for a list of DeepSky Objects that will be available to us this session.
All times are shown in EDT (Eastern Daylight Time (UT-4)) as seen from Stow, Ohio
Longitude: W 81 25' 38.4"
 Latitude: N41 11' 11.1"
 Altitude: 337m

The following Sun, Moon and planet detail was calculated as it will be on Friday 6/17/2011 at 10:17:57pm (nautical twilight).
Source: Guide8 software available from www.projectpluto.com

ABOVE HORIZON:
Object       Mag    Const     Rise     Set
Saturn       0.8     Vir     14:25   02:23
Pluto       14.2     Sgr     21:11   07:04

BELOW HORIZON:
Object       Mag    Const     Rise     Set
Sun        -26.7     Tau     05:48   21:04
Mercury     -1.6     Gem     06:07   21:37
Venus       -3.9     Tau     04:50   19:43
Mars         1.4     Tau     04:06   18:43
Jupiter     -2.2     Ari     02:57   16:29
Uranus       5.9     Psc     01:48   14:06
Neptune      7.9     Aqr     00:29   11:16
Moon       -11.9     Sgr     22:32   08:49

Sun data:
     Rise: 5:48am
     Transit: 1:26pm (Time of highest position in the sky, due South)
     Sets: 9:04pm
     Constellation: Taurus
     Distance: 1.01597216 AU = 151,987,272 km = 94,440,514 miles = 8.46 light-minutes
     Magnitude: -26.7
     Apparent size: 31.48 arcminutes in angular diameter

     Civil twilight ends at: 9:35pm ( When the Sun is 6 below the horizon )
     Nautical twilight ends at: 10:18pm ( When the Sun is 12 below the horizon )
     Astronomical twilight ends at: 11:09pm ( When the Sun is 18 below the horizon )

     Spring began at the Vernal Equinox which occurred on Sunday Mar 20, 2011 at 7:21pm
     Summer begins at the Summer Solstice which will occur on Tuesday Jun 21, 2011 at 1:17pm

     Next Solar Eclipse: Partial eclipse (>80%) on Monday August 21, 2017 2:30pm EDT
     Next TOTAL Solar Eclipse: Monday April 8, 2024 at 3:15pm
     On 6/17/2011 at 10:17:57pm the Sun will be 12 below the northwest horizon

Moon data:
     Rise: 10:32pm
     Transit: 3:37am - Jun 18 (Time of highest position in the sky, due South)
     Sets: 8:49am - Jun 18
     Constellation: Sagittarius
     Phase:  93.80% illuminated (waning gibbous)
     Distance: 0.00257399 AU = 385,064 km = 239,268 miles = 1.29 light-seconds
     Magnitude: -11.9
     Apparent size: 31.02 arcminutes in angular diameter
     Elongation from Sun: 151.08 (morning sky)
     Age: 16d 5h 16m since last New Moon
     Prior Phase: Full Moon on Wednesday Jun 15, 2011 at 4:14pm
      Next Phase: Last Quarter on Thursday Jun 23, 2011 at 7:48am
     Next Lunar eclipse: Total eclipse (100%) on Sunday Sept 27, 2015 at 10:10pm EDT
     On 6/17/2011 at 10:17:57pm the Moon will be 3.8 below the east horizon

Mercury data:
     Rise: 6:07am
     Transit: 1:52pm (Time of highest position in the sky, due South)
     Sets: 9:37pm
     Constellation: Gemini
     Phase:  96.67% illuminated
     Distance: 1.30619214 AU = 195,403,563 km = 121,418,146 miles = 10.88 light-minutes
     Magnitude: -1.6
     Apparent size: 5.15 arcseconds in angular diameter
     Elongation from Sun: 6.44 (evening sky)
     Next maximum elongations...
          Evening: Wednesday, July 20, 2011 (26 49' 02")
          Morning: Saturday, September 3, 2011 (18 06' 39")
     On 6/17/2011 at 10:17:57pm Mercury will be 7.1 below the west-northwest horizon

Venus data:
     Rise: 4:50am
     Transit: 12:16pm (Time of highest position in the sky, due South)
     Sets: 7:43pm
     Constellation: Taurus
     Phase:  95.99% illuminated
     Distance: 1.64050838 AU = 245,416,561 km = 152,494,783 miles = 13.66 light-minutes
     Magnitude: -3.9
     Apparent size: 10.17 arcseconds in angular diameter
     Elongation from Sun: 16.20 (morning sky)
     Next maximum elongations...
          Evening: Tuesday, March 27, 2012 (46 02' 27")
          Morning: Wednesday, August 15, 2012 (45 48' 10")
     On 6/17/2011 at 10:17:57pm Venus will be 21.7 below the northwest horizon

Mars data:
     Rise: 4:06am
     Transit: 11:24am (Time of highest position in the sky, due South)
     Sets: 6:43pm
     Constellation: Taurus
     Phase:  97.07% illuminated
     Distance: 2.25282137 AU = 337,017,280 km = 209,412,832 miles = 18.76 light-minutes
     Magnitude: 1.4
     Apparent size: 4.15 arcseconds in angular diameter
     Elongation from Sun: 28.71 (morning sky)
     Dates of Opposition (when Mars is closest to Earth)
        Previous: Friday Jan 29, 2010 at 2:21pm.  Distance: 99,400,435 km.  Size: 14.08 arcseconds.
            Next: Saturday Mar 3, 2012 at 3:52pm.  Distance: 100,839,728 km.  Size: 13.88 arcseconds.
     On 6/17/2011 at 10:17:57pm Mars will be 27.4 below the north-northwest horizon

     Question: Will Mars be "as big as a Full Moon on August 27!" ???
       Answer: ABSOLUTELY NOT!!!

     Question: Will there be "Two Full Moons in the Sky!" ???
       Answer: ABSOLUTELY NOT!!!

     Mars was the closest in recorded history on August 27, but that was only in 2003, not every year!
     At that time, it appeared to be 1/75th the apparent diameter of the Moon!  NOT the "same size as the Full Moon".

     Please check these respected sites for their stories on the "Mars hoax" by clicking on the links below:
         http://www.skyandtelescope.com/observing/highlights/8708182.html
         http://www.snopes.com/science/astronomy/brightmars.asp
         http://www.hoax-slayer.com/mars-earth-close.html
         http://www.universetoday.com/2007/07/25/will-the-mars-look-as-big-as-the-moon-on-august-27-nope/

Jupiter data:
     Rise: 2:57am - Jun 18
     Transit: 9:43am - Jun 18 (Time of highest position in the sky, due South)
     Sets: 4:29pm - Jun 18
     Constellation: Aries
     Phase:  99.31% illuminated
     Distance: 5.4810515 AU = 819,953,634 km = 509,495,574 miles = 45.65 light-minutes
     Magnitude: -2.2
     Apparent size: 35.97 arcseconds in angular diameter
     Elongation from Sun: 53.90 (morning sky)
     Dates of Opposition (when Jupiter is closest to Earth)
        Previous: Tuesday Sep 21, 2010 at 7:28am
            Next: Friday Oct 28, 2011 at 9:37pm
     On 6/17/2011 at 10:17:57pm Jupiter will be 37 below the north horizon
 
     Next transit of the Great Red Spot: Saturday Jun 18, 2011 at  4:58am (The Red Spot transits about every 9 hours 56 minutes)
     GRS longitude: 162.2
     Jupiter satellite events (during darkness):
          none tonight

Saturn data:
     Rise: 2:25pm
     Transit: 8:24pm (Time of highest position in the sky, due South)
     Sets: 2:23am - Jun 18
     Constellation: Virgo
     Phase:  99.74% illuminated
     Distance: 9.34034188 AU = 1,397,295,256 km = 868,239,030 miles = 1.3 light-hours
     Magnitude: 0.8
     Apparent size: 17.79 arcseconds in angular diameter
     Elongation from Sun: 103.90 (evening sky)
     Dates of Opposition (when Saturn is closest to Earth)
        Previous: Sunday Apr 3, 2011 at 7:48pm
            Next: Sunday Apr 15, 2012 at 2:19pm
     On 6/17/2011 at 10:17:57pm Saturn will be 39.9 above the south-southwest horizon

Uranus data:
     Rise: 1:48am - Jun 18
     Transit: 7:57am - Jun 18 (Time of highest position in the sky, due South)
     Sets: 2:06pm - Jun 18
     Constellation: Pisces
     Phase:  99.94% illuminated
     Distance: 20.19714338 AU = 3,021,449,644 km = 1,877,441,791 miles = 2.8 light-hours
     Magnitude: 5.9
     Apparent size: 3.49 arcseconds in angular diameter
     Elongation from Sun: 82.18 (morning sky)
     Dates of Opposition (when Uranus is closest to Earth)
        Previous: Tuesday Sep 21, 2010 at 12:51pm
            Next: Sunday Sep 25, 2011 at 8:07pm
     On 6/17/2011 at 10:17:57pm Uranus will be 37.3 below the northeast horizon

Neptune data:
     Rise: 0:29am - Jun 18
     Transit: 5:52am - Jun 18 (Time of highest position in the sky, due South)
     Sets: 11:16am - Jun 18
     Constellation: Aquarius
     Phase:  99.98% illuminated
     Distance: 29.55448546 AU = 4,421,288,094 km = 2,747,261,089 miles = 4.1 light-hours
     Magnitude: 7.9
     Apparent size: 2.31 arcseconds in angular diameter
     Elongation from Sun: 115.68 (morning sky)
     Dates of Opposition (when Neptune is closest to Earth)
        Previous: Friday Aug 20, 2010 at 5:59am
            Next: Monday Aug 22, 2011 at 7:18pm
     On 6/17/2011 at 10:17:57pm Neptune will be 25.7 below the east-northeast horizon

Pluto (Dwarf Planet aka Asteroid 134340) data:
     Rise: 9:11pm
     Transit: 2:08am - Jun 18 (Time of highest position in the sky, due South)
     Sets: 7:04am - Jun 18
     Constellation: Sagittarius
     Phase:  100.00% illuminated
     Distance: 31.04777764 AU = 4,644,681,424 km = 2,886,071,270 miles = 4.31 light-hours
     Magnitude: 14.2
     Apparent size: 0.11 arcseconds in angular diameter
     Elongation from Sun: 169.13 (morning sky)
     Dates of Opposition (when Pluto is closest to Earth)
        Previous: Friday Jun 25, 2010 at 2:59pm
            Next: Tuesday Jun 28, 2011 at 1:23am
     On 6/17/2011 at 10:17:57pm Pluto will be 9.7 above the east-southeast horizon
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