Scheduled time for Public Observing: 8pm – 10pm
**UPDATE** – As of this time the January public observing session is cancelled due to equipment problems. If repairs are completed in time, this page will be updated to show that we will be open. Otherwise, please check with us again for the February session!
Solar System Objects:
The Moon will be 54° high in the SW at 8pm, and 67% illuminated (first quarter phase, 9 days old). Some of the major features are labeled in the image below, taken from the Virtual Moon Atlas, which is available online for free. See the link just below the image.
Image (c) Virtual Moon Atlas / http://ap-i.net/avl/en/start
Planets: Uranus will be only a couple of degrees away from the moon in the sky tonight, and is the only planet that could be observable. At magnitude 5.8 it won’t be visible to the naked eye, but under ideal dark-sky conditions without the moon nearby, it is visible if you know exactly where to look. After all, it is 1.8 billion miles away.
With the Moon in the sky, only the brightest deep-sky objects can be observed, the best example may be the Orion Nebula, #42 in the Messier Catalog. The central core of this star forming region will still show up in the telescope under these conditions.