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.

October 2018

Phases of the Moon

Last Quarter:October 02
New Moon:October 09
First Quarter:October 16
Full Moon:October 24
Last Quarter:October 31
There are two Last Quarters in October 2018!


Venus will be in the inferior conjuction on October 26, i.e., it will be exactly between our Earth and Sun. Hence, it can be observed neither in the evening nor in the morning.

Mars Observation: Great perihelic opposition 2018

Mars is now getting higher in the sky, but it also recedes from the Earth so that its diameter shrinks. Consequently, one needs higher magnification to see the South Polar Cap (SPC) and some dark albedo features. Also the telescope should have the mirror's diameter of 20--25cm to gather enough light and to have a sufficient resolution. The dust is still spread in the atmosphere, but more and more details can be seen as the atmosphere cleans up. I was able to observe Syrtis Major, Hellas, Mare Tyrrhenum, Mare Cimmerium, Mare Sirenum and, of course, the SPC, which is very small now. It is because there is late spring in the southern hemisphere and the summer will start on October 18, so that the SPC sublimates rapidly.

Article by (C) G. Okša