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Bruce McClure

Moon near Spica on April 27 and 28

Spica, in the constellation Virgo, is one of our sky’s brightest stars. An even brighter object will be nearby, the planet Jupiter.

April 26 moon near Spica and celestial equator

Just as earthly coordinates help travelers, so celestial coordinates guide sky explorers. Tonight, meet Earth’s celestial equator … simply Earth’s equator projected onto the great dome of sky.

A word about the moon’s distance tonight

The moon was closest to Earth April 20. It’ll be farthest from Earth May 6. Tonight’s moon is closer to its average distance from Earth.

Moon sweeps through Leo the Lion April 23 to 25

The waxing gibbous moon moves toward Leo’s brightest star Regulus, then passes it. It’s a good time to identify this easy-to-find constellation.

Lyrid meteors before dawn April 23?

Will you see Lyrid meteors Monday morning? Maybe! The shower’s peak has passed by Monday, but some meteors may still be flying.

Lyrid meteor shower: All you need to know

In 2018, April 22 is the peak morning. The moon, near the 1st quarter phase, is out of the way. Expect 10 to 20 meteors per hour at the peak.

Lyrid meteor shower peaks this weekend

Assuming ideal conditions, you might catch 10 to 20 meteors per hour in 2018’s Lyrid meteor shower. The peak is probably Sunday morning, but watch the mornings before and after, too.

Moon in Winter Circle April 19 to 21

What a great time to identify many bright stars! Let the moon be your guide.

Moon and Venus on April 17 to 19

On April 17 to 19, you’ll see some gorgeous pairings of the moon and brightest planet Venus. You’ll find them in the west shortly after the sun goes down.

Will you see the young moon?

It’s a wonderful evening for young moon hunting from North America or a Pacific island. The moon will be west after sunset, below brilliant Venus.