Manage episode 365092213 series 49427
Welcome to Observing With Webb, where a high school astronomy teacher tells you what you’re looking at, why it’s so cool, and what you should check out later this month…at night.
Venus shines bright at sunset all month, with Mars nearby, while Saturn, Jupiter, and even Mercury shine in the mornings, and the Beehive Cluster gets two wandering guests, all in the solstice month of June.
21st – Summer Solstice – This is the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere.
Spring Constellations: Big Dipper, Boötes, Virgo, Corona Borealis, Hercules – Gaze almost vertically as you face the NW, and you’ll easily find the Big Dipper: seven very bright stars that form a saucepan shape. Now if you take the handle of the Dipper, follow its curve to the next bright star you see, about 20˚ away, which is Arcturus. “Follow the arc to Arcturus.” That’s the brightest star in Boötes, which looks like a kite.
Take that same curve, and follow it about another 20˚ to “South to Spica”, the brightest star in Virgo, one of my favorite constellations, since it reminds me of the Dickinson Mermaid. Now go back to Boötes, and just to the left of Boötes are seven stars that form the northern crown Corona Borealis, which looks more like a small bowl or a “C” in the sky.
Continue a little further to the left and you’ll find the keystone asterism which is part of the constellation Hercules. Extra Challenge! Look for M13, the Hercules Cluster in between two of Hercules’ “keystone” stars. It known as the best globular cluster in the northern skies. It will be a fuzzy spot in binoculars and will be even cooler through a telescope.
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