"A New Way to Use the Big Dipper, and: Venus Pays a Visit to the Seven Sisters"

Scheduled air date: 1999 Apr 05-11

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For the next couple of weeks, Mars can be seen to form a triangle with the bright stars Spica and Arcturus.  You can use the handle of the Big Dipper to help locate them: extend the arc of the handle away from the dipper, and you'll encounter reddish Arcturus; continue and you'll come to white Spica.  As Mars will be at its closest to Earth, it will outshine both of these stars.
(Shown about 10:00pm for mid-Northern latitudes.  Mars' position is shown for the night of April 11th)

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And on the evenings of April 10th through the 13th, Venus can be seen passing to the South of the Pleiades, or Seven Sisters, just after dark.
The inset shows a binocular view of the position of Venus for each of these nights.

If you wish to view illustrations for other episodes, please see our Star Gazer Illustrated directory.

Illustrations on this page were created using TheSky Astronomy Software, an advanced desktop planetarium program designed for Windows.

Copyright 1999-2006 by Software Bisque, Inc.