SJAA Ephemeris February 2013 | SJAA Home | Contents | Previous | Next

Planets in February


Asteroid 2012 DA14 - this asteroid will pass closer to Earth than that geostationary satellite that you get your television broadcasts from. It probably will not cause an outage on February 15 but have a book handy just in case.

Mercury - Visible during the middle of the month particularly in the evening of February 16th. In a telescope it should appear to be as a half disk.

Venus - A morning star this month but it is low in the sky and getting lower. Conjunction is on March 28th.

Moon - Checkout the moon as it passes close to Spica on February 28th. If you are in Mexico or further south you can catch an occultation.

Mars - Close to Mercury but not as bright. They appear closest to each other on Feburary 8th.

Jupiter - The solar system’s largest planet continues to dominate the night skies. It is brighter than any star including Sirius. Because of the sun’s angle this is a great month to view the Galilean moons transits.

Saturn - Saturn rises around midnight. It will be low in the southern sky. It is a good month to view the planet’s shadow on its rings.

Uranus - A difficult object in the western sky just after sunset.

Neptune - Close to Mercury but very difficult to see early in the month then it gets worse. Neptune reaches conjunction on the 21st.

Comets - You might already know about Comet ISON (C/2012 S1) which may be a naked-eye object by December. But Comet PanSTARRS (C/2011 L4) will be a magnitude 4 object (maybe, comet magnitude predictions for objects making their first inner solar system visit are notoriously bad) by late February. However, it will probably be too far south to be seen around here until mid-March.


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