May 10, 2011

When the Moon is in the Seventh House…

by Heather Falconer

…and Jupiter aligns with Mars…. Okay, we’ll spare you our singing. But what we won’t spare you is the heads up that this is a great month, and a brilliant week in particular, for stargazing.

Throughout all of May, the eastern pre-dawn horizon will play host to Mercury, Venus, Mars and Jupiter clustered together in a patch of sky less than 10o wide. During the half hour before sunrise, these four planets will be clearly visible in the sky (provided there isn’t cloud cover). Venus and Jupiter, in particular, will be hard to miss with their bright luminosity.

On May 11th, the planets will be tightly clustered together, then as the month moves on, they will continually form new shapes in the sky. As the folks at NASA say, “The show comes to an end on May 30th when an exquisite crescent Moon joins the four planets for a Grand Finale–five heavenly lights dotting the eastern sky all at once”

If you manage to get out of bed early enough to see this spectacular celestial display, bring your camera and send us some pics through Facebook! 

Heather Falconer

Written by

Heather Falconer holds undergraduate degrees in Graphic Arts and Environmental Science, as well as an MFA in Writing and an MLitt in Literature. She is currently completing her PhD in Rhetoric and Composition, with an emphasis on rhetoric in/and/of science. Heather has worked internationally in academic publishing as both an author and editor, and has taught a wide range of topics – from research writing to marine biology – in the public and private educational sectors.