SkyDiary
Image Credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls

Find out what’s up in the night sky:
Upcoming astoronomical events, interesting observations, packed with everything a stargazer needs to know.

Observations are described for the NORTHERN hemisphere and can be made by naked eye, small binoculars or by small telescope.

April 2018

Phases of the Moon

Last Quarter:April 8
New Moon:April 16
First Quarter:April 22
Full Moon:April 30

Venus at Evening

In April, the planet Venus is observable about 11-16 degrees over the western horizon, and it becomes very bright, around (-3.9) mag. On April 17 and 18, the very narrow Moon will be in the vicinity of Venus and this sight should be very nice!

Jupiter around Midnight

While the planet Venus dominates at the evening, the planet Jupiter shines brightly from around midnight till morning. It is also very bright, (-2.4) mag. Its four moons (Io, Europa, Ganymede, Callipso) are easily observable already in larger binoculars, which should be mounted on a tripod.

Mars Observation: Great perihelic opposition 2018

On Mars, there is a late summer on the northern hemisphere and a late winter on the southern hemisphere. The planet is already close to the equinox. The northern hemisphere is inclined towards Sun (and Earth), but not too much. The northern cap is of a minimal extent - it is not visible on recent photographs. The southern cap is hidden under dense clouds which form the southern polar hood. Recent photographs can be found, for example, on the WWW page of the British Astronomical Association, Mars Section. On April 20, the visible diameter of Mars reaches 10 arc-seconds and continually increases.

Article by (C) G. Okša