Anthony Wesley captured this glorious telescope image of the planet Mars on March 6. He wrote on his Facebook page:
Some good seeing this morning for the first time in many weeks…. I nearly missed it as the forecast was for cloud and rain, but at 3 a.m. it was clear although I could see lightning off in the distance…
North polar cap at top left, Syrtis Major to the lower left, cloud over the Elysium volcanoes at upper right, still bright blue cloud in Hellas at bottom. A faint band of equatorial cloud is also visible.
A few days earlier, he got this awesome shot of Mars’ two moons, Phobos and Deimos.
Of the image above, he wrote:
Third time lucky… got both Phobos and Deimos this time. Operating the GS3 camera in 12 bit mode gives me a little more headroom. Once again the diffraction from my 3 vane spider is prominent. 3 minutes @ 10fps, no filter (L channel). 16″ f/4 newtonian @ 6000mm focal length
Thank you, Anthony Wesley!
Mars has good years in our sky, and it has years in which you hardly notice it. 2014 is a good year! Look for Mars tonight. Here’s how.
Deborah Byrd created the EarthSky radio series in 1991 and founded EarthSky.org in 1994. Today, she serves as Editor-in-Chief of this website. She has won a galaxy of awards from the broadcasting and science communities, including having an asteroid named 3505 Byrd in her honor. A science communicator and educator since 1976, Byrd believes in science as a force for good in the world and a vital tool for the 21st century. "Being an EarthSky editor is like hosting a big global party for cool nature-lovers," she says.