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Bruce McClure

February guide to the bright planets

Awesome news! Venus has been spotted after sunset. Meanwhile, 3 of the 5 bright planets – Mars, Jupiter, Saturn – are up before dawn in February 2018. Mercury is still in the sun’s glare.

January 31 is 1st of 2 Blue Moons in 2018

According to modern folklore, the second of 2 full moons in a month is called a Blue Moon. In 2018, we have 2 of those! How often it happens, here.

Super Blue Moon eclipse on January 31

The super Blue Moon happens before sunrise on January 31, 2018, for North America and Hawaii. It happens after sunset on January 31 for the Middle East, Asia, Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand. Details here.

Moon near Castor and Pollux January 29

Castor and Pollux – brightest stars in the constellation Gemini the Twins – are noticeable for being bright and close together on the sky’s dome.

Hyades star cluster: Face of Taurus

The bright star Aldebaran is part of a V-shaped pattern of stars called the Hyades. This easy-to-find star cluster represents the face of Taurus the Bull.

Moon near Aldebaran January 26 and 27

Will you see Aldebaran in the moon’s glare on January 26 or 27, 2018? Plus … the story of Aldebaran when it was part of a double pole star.

Dwarf planet Ceres soon to be closest since 2009

Earth and Ceres will be closest for 2018 on February 1. Ceres hasn’t been this close since 2009. Start looking for this tiny world – largest body in the asteroid belt – now.

Half-lit quarter moon on January 24

The Earth and moon are like mirrors to each other in that – when we see a 1st quarter moon in our sky – those on the moon would see a last quarter Earth.

Orion Nebula is a place where new stars are being born

Everything you need to know about the Orion Nebula. How to find it in your sky tonight. Plus … the science of this star factory in space.

How to locate planet Uranus

Tonight’s waxing crescent moon shines close to Uranus. Learn how to locate the planet, using tonight’s moon location and these links to charts and other info.