SPACE JUNK: NOVEMBER 2014

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Photo Credit & Copyright: ME of LaLuna.

Check out NASA’s Lunar Phase & Libration video below. I have also listed all resources used to generate these monthly calendars at the bottom of the post! This month fall is in full swing and the night sky has some noticeable changes as the Orion neighborhood aka Winter Hexagon region rises earlier and earlier as the month moves on.  We FALL BACK one hour and ESA is ready to land a on a comet!

WERE YOU BORN ON A FULL MOON?! This great page from Moon Giant shows you what phase the Moon was in when you were born; check it out: http://www.moongiant.com/birthday_moon/

NOVEMBER 01 (Sat) – Entering the month the Moon is 9 days old in its 29.53 day Synodic Cycle and 66% illuminated in its waxing gibbous phase.

NOVEMBER 01 (Sat) – Sunrise on the lunar scarp; Rupes Recta or the “Straight Wall” is visible tonight.  A day after first quarter (around 60% illuminated) the rising Sun causes it to look black as its shadow is cast.  Two weeks later, during lunar sunset it will appear white.

NOVEMBER 01 (Sat) – Pico Mons Sunrise occurs this morning around 03:00 EDT (08:00 UTC).  A day after first quarter (around 60% illuminated) the rising Sun hits Pico Mons in Mare Imbrium, near Crater Plato and casts a long shadow along the lunar plains.

NOVEMBER 01 (Sat) – Mercury reaches greatest western elongation at 18.7 degrees.

NOVEMBER 02 (Sun) – FALL BACK:  02:00 am becomes 01:00 am as Daylight Savings time becomes Standard Time here in the U.S. for those of you who participate.  For example (I’ll use east coast time) 02:00 EDT will become 01:00 EST and we will then continue with EST until we spring forward again in 2015.  Eastern time will now be 5 hours behind Universal Time (UTC or UT) instead of the 4 hour difference we have been using the summer.  For future reference, 2015 SPRING FORWARD will be March 8 & FALL BACK will be November 1.

NOVEMBER 02 (Sun) – Perigee Moon occurs at 19:35 EST (00:35 UTC on the 3rd) and is when the Moon is at its closest point to Earth in its orbit. It will be subtending at 33’arc minutes from a distance of 367,876 km (228,603 mi).

NOVEMBER 04 (Wed) – The Moon reaches Descending Node at 22:13 EST (03:13 UTC on the 5th).

NOVEMBER 06 (Thu) – The Full Moon will occur at 22:22 UTC (17:22 EST). Full Beaver Moon: This was the time to set beaver traps before the swamps froze, to ensure a supply of warm winter furs. Another interpretation suggests that the name Full Beaver Moon comes from the fact that the beavers are now actively preparing for winter. It is sometimes also referred to as the Frosty Moon.

NOVEMBER 09 (Sun) – The Moon reaches its Greatest Northern Declination of +18.34 degrees.

NOVEMBER 12 (Wed) – ESA Rosetta will release the Philae lander to harpoon and land on Comet 67P at designated site “J” at 18:35 UTC (13:35 EST). http://www.esa.int/Our_Activities/Space_Science/Rosetta/Rosetta_to_deploy_lander_on_12_November

NOVEMBER 14 (Fri) – Last Quarter (3rd Quarter) Moon occurs this month at 15:17 UTC (10:17 EST).

NOVEMBER 14 (Fri) – The brilliant Walther Sunset Ray will occur at 13:43 UTC (08:43 EST). Located in the ancient 145 kilometer (90 mile) Necterian age crater named Walther (Formerly Walter or Valtherus) is a special treat that occurs monthly for a matter of a few hours when illumination is around 44%. On the western rim of the crater there’s a notch and when the Sun is setting low on the lunar horizon (When the crater is near the terminator) light penetrates the notch, creating a vast triangle or “V” shaped light ray across the craters floor that ends as it illuminates the central peak of the crater. Walther Crater a heavily eroded crater located in the Lunar Southern Highlands at the Selenographic Coordinates (Definition below) of Latitude: 33.1°S / Longitude: 1.0°E. It’s named after German astronomer Bernhard Walther. This crater also has a sunrise ray that instead of a light ray is a long shadow cast by the central peak.

NOVEMBER 14 (Fri) – Apogee Moon occurs at 20:48 EST (01:48 UTC on the 15th) where the Moon is at its furthest point from Earth in its current orbit and will be subtending at 29’ arc minutes from a distance of 404,340 km (251,263 mi).

NOVEMBER 14 (Fri) – Sunset on the lunar scarp; Rupes Recta or the “Straight Wall” is visible this morning around 03:00 EST (08:00 UTC).  A day after last quarter (about 45% illuminated) the setting Sun causes it to look white as it illuminates the slope.  Two weeks later, during lunar sunrise after first quarter it will appear black.

NOVEMBER 14 (Fri) – Pico Mons Sunset occurs this morning around 03:00 EST (08:00 UTC).  A day after first quarter (around 60% illuminated) the rising Sun hits Pico Mons in Mare Imbrium, near Crater Plato and casts a long shadow along the lunar plains.

NOVEMBER 15 (Sat) – The CURTISS CROSS, a shadowing effect along craters Gambart and Parry which create an “X” shaped formation and will occur at 23:51 UTC (18:51 EST).  The Curtiss Cross is associated with the third (last) quarter Moon and forms about 14 hours past the third quarter mark.

NOVEMBER 17 (Sun) – 26 (Wed) As of the 17th we are on the verge of November’s new moon (Lunation 1137), this week presents nights that are the absolute BEST nights to get out and observe Deep Sky Objects (DSOs) because you won’t have to look through the spotlight that is the Moon. Night skies without the Moon are significantly more productive for viewing and photography ANY night sky object (besides the Moon itself of course). For the lucky ones, this week offers the amazing spectacle of the extreme crescent moon, both waning in the east & waxing in the west.

NOVEMBER 17 & 18 (Mon & Tue): The Peak of the Leonids meteor shower hits on the night of the 17th and morning of the 18st.  This shower peaks at about 15 per hour from the general direction of the constellation Leo.  The Moon will be in its waning crescent phase and only about 15% illuminated thus will be rising before sunrise but should have little impact in brightness when it does.  The parent body of the Leonids Meteor Shower is the one and only Comet 55P/Temple-Tuttle.

Peak night is usually a given night and next morning with the “next morning” being the absolute best time to watch. In fact the closer to morning twilight you can get, the better…..here’s why. If you view the solar system from the top, planets orbit the Sun in a counter clockwise motion, we also rotate in a counter clockwise motion. That means just before sunrise the Earth is pointed in the direction of travel of the Earth itself and meteors are mere “bugs (Or if you prefer; “snowflakes”) hitting the windshield” of Spaceship Earth. For more info on this shower hit the link: https://danspace77.com/2014-meteor-showers/.

NOVEMBER 19 (Wed) – The Moon reaches Ascending Node at 08:18 UTC (03:18 EST).

NOVEMBER 22 (Sat) – New Moon (LUNATION 1137) occurs at 12:32 UTC (07:32 EST).

NOVEMBER 24 (Mon) – The Moon is at its Greatest Southern Declination of -18.37 degrees.

NOVEMBER 27 (Thu) – Perigee Moon occurs at 17:50 EST (22:50 UTC) and is when the Moon is at its closest point to Earth in its orbit. It will be subtending at 33’arc minutes from a distance of 369,796 km (229,823 mi). This will be the furthest perigee of 2014.

NOVEMBER 28 (Fri) – LUNAR-S should occur just before first quarter phase around 47% illuminated.  A different aspect to this event is that it doesn’t ride the terminator but instead happens in the lit portion of the Moon away from the terminator slightly.  The “S” itself is a white This feature is located at the edge of Sinus Asperitatis, just below Mare Tranquillitatis and is formed by sunlight and shadows along craters Kant, Kant E and Mons Penck.

NOVEMBER 29 (Sat) – LUNAR-V is scheduled to begin forming around 08:25 UTC (03:25 EST).  Like most of the other lunar formations, the Lunar-V occurs near the terminator (where “day” meets “night” across the Moon).  This event usually takes place in conjunction with the Lunar-X and near first quarter phase but sometimes libration will change these times slightly.

NOVEMBER 29 (Sat) – LUNAR-X also known as the PURBACH or WERNER CROSS is scheduled to begin forming the “X” around 09:25 UTC (04:25 EST). The Lunar-X is the big, more prominent brother to the Curtiss Cross. This “X” is created by shadows along rims and ridges of craters LaCaille, Blanchinus and Purbach. The “X” formations occur along the terminator (where “day” meets “night” across the Moon).

NOVEMBER 29 (Sat) – First Quarter Moon is the Moon watchers paradise. Occurring at 10:06 UTC (05:06 EST), First Quarter Moons and the waxing crescent phase leading up to it offer some of the most visually stunning views the Moon has to offer. Most of us will take the beautiful curves, valleys and shadows of a 1st Quarter Moon over a Full Moon ANY day.

NOVEMBER 30 (Sun) – Sunrise on the lunar scarp; Rupes Recta or the “Straight Wall” is visible this morning around 03:00 EST (08:00 UTC).  A day after first quarter (around 60% illuminated) the rising Sun causes it to look black as its shadow is cast.  Two weeks later, during lunar sunset it will appear white.

NOVEMBER 30 (Sun) – Pico Mons Sunrise occurs this morning around 03:00 EST (08:00 UTC).  A day after first quarter (around 60% illuminated) the rising Sun hits Pico Mons in Mare Imbrium, near Crater Plato and casts a long shadow along the lunar plains.

NOVEMBER 30 (Sun) – MAGINUS SUNRISE RAY will occur at 06:57 UTC (01:57 EST). At the right times and as the Sun rises over the Crater Maginus (Near the terminator) a beautiful sun ray shines through a break in the craters eastern wall. The result is a vast triangle or “V” formation of light cast upon the crater floor for a period of a few hours. Maginus Crater (Named after Italian astronomer Giovanni Antonio Magini) is a pre-Nectarian impact crater located in the southern lunar highlands and to the south east of Tycho Crater. It’s 110 miles (177km.) and has been extremely eroded by subsequent impacts on or near the site through the millennia. Its selenographic coordinates (Definition below) are Latitude: 50.5°S / Longitude: 6.3°W.

NOVEMBER 30 (Sun) – Leaving the month the Moon is 8 days old in its 29.53 day Synodic Cycle and 63% illuminated in its waxing crescent phase.

***Definition of LIBRATION (basically) – Is an oscillation of an orbiting body relative to another. OK, so…We know the Earth/Moon system is tidally locked so we always see the same side of the moon. Due to libration, we ACTUALLY see about 60% of the Moon instead of what you may intuitively think of as a 50% measurement. That’s because the Moon oscillates slightly as it rotates and orbits Earth. So, on occasion and with a keen eye we can see a little further “around the corner” north, south, east and west on the moon by a couple degrees.

***SUBTENDING Explained – Definition: The angle formed by an object at a given external point. The moon subtends an angle of approximately 0.54° (32 arc minutes) to an observer on the Earth. Of course, the moon’s orbit is not constant or exactly circular, so this varies a little, but not by very much. If you hold up your thumb at arm’s length, you can easily cover the full moon. This means your thumb subtends a larger angle to your eye at arm’s length than the moon does at 380,000 kilometers. In general, the closer you are to a particular object the larger that subtending angle.

***SELENOGRAPHIC COORDINATES Defined – Selenographic coordinates are used to refer to locations on the surface of Earth’s Moon. Any position on the lunar surface can be referenced by specifying two numerical values, which are comparable to the latitude and longitude of Earth. The longitude gives the position east or west of the Moon’s prime meridian, which is the line of longitude passing through the point on the lunar surface directly facing Earth. (See also Earth’s prime meridian.) This can be thought of as the midpoint of the visible Moon as seen from the Earth. The latitude gives the position north or south of the lunar equator. Both of these coordinates are given in terms of degrees. Astronomers defined the fundamental location in the selenographic coordinate system by the small, bowl-shaped satellite crater ‘Mösting A’. The coordinates of this crater are defined as: Latitude: 3° 12′ 43.2″ South / Longitude: 5° 12′ 39.6″ West. The coordinate system has become precisely defined due to the Lunar Laser Ranging Experiment. Anything past 90°E or 90°W would not be seen from Earth, except for libration, which makes 59% of the Moon visible.

NASA | Moon Phase and Libration North Up 2014: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PKRtZ89AMts

2014 Moon phases with TIMES: http://www.calendar-12.com/moon_phases/2014

FULL YEAR of Lunar Cycles: Previous and Future years as well: http://kalender-365.de/lunar-calendar.php?yy=2014

2014 Moon phase & illumination calendar: http://www.calendar-12.com/moon_calendar/2014/october

Full & New Moon Calendar: http://www.moongiant.com/Full_Moon_New_Moon_Calendar.php

BLUE MOON Calendar: http://www.moongiant.com/Blue_Moon_Calendar.php

SUPERMOON Calendar: http://www.astropro.com/features/tables/cen21ce/suprmoon.html

2014 Perigee & Apogee DATES, TIMES & DISTANCES as well as Full & New Moon dates & times: http://www.fourmilab.ch/earthview/pacalc.html

2014 Perigee & Apogee: http://www.timeanddate.com/astronomy/moon/distance.html

Lunar Ray predictions: http://www.lunar-occultations.com/rlo/rays/rays.htm

Sun/Moon Rise & Set times: http://www.40-below.com/sunmoon/

Sun/Moon Rise & Set times for the DAY: http://aa.usno.navy.mil/data/docs/RS_OneDay.php

Sun/Moon Rise & Set times for the YEAR: http://aa.usno.navy.mil/data/docs/RS_OneYear.php

Farmer’s Almanac Full Moon Names: http://www.farmersalmanac.com/full-moon-names/

Lunar ASCENDING & DESCENDING Nodes: http://astropixels.com/ephemeris/moon/moonnodes2001.html

Greatest NORTHERN & SOUTHERN Declinations of the Moon: http://www.astropro.com/features/tables/cen21ce/mo-dcl-2014.html

Moon Phases for ANY date: http://www.moonpage.com/

NASA GODDARD Moon NOW: http://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/vis/a000000/a004100/a004118/

Moon right NOW: http://www.calculatorcat.com/moon_phases/phasenow.php

Moon right NOW: http://www.die.net/moon/

Moon right NOW: http://www.calendar-365.com/moon/current-moon-phase.html

NASA JPL Ephemeris Calculator: http://ssd.jpl.nasa.gov/?horizons

Lunar Ephemeris Calculator: http://www.lunar-occultations.com/rlo/ephemeris.htm

Equinoxes/Solstices: http://wwp.greenwich-mean-time.eu/longest-day/

Sunrise & Sunset CHART: http://sunrisehour.com/sunrise-sunset/united_states/boston_ma

Kilometers (km) to miles (mi.) converter: http://www.metric-conversions.org/length/kilometers-to-miles.htm

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2 Responses to SPACE JUNK: NOVEMBER 2014

  1. stevend says:

    Just sharing; on November 23rd at 0716UT Io will occult Europa. At the same time you can view the GRS and there is a Ganymede shadow transit.

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