The Night Sky in MAY 2024

For more details please consult – Astronomy – Sun – Moon – Eclipses (timeanddate.com) and In-The-Sky.org

Overview

The days are getting noticeably longer with consequent shorting of the nights. Stars and objects of the Spring Sky are starting to show themselves at around 9pm.

The Moon 

New Moon 8th May 2024 at 0421     First Quarter 15th May 2024 at 1248              

Full Moon 23rd May 2024 at 1453     Last Quarter 30th May 2024 at 1812

The Planets   

Sun   Moon  Mercury Venus   Mars    Jupiter   Saturn    Uranus

Rise        0716    1344    0600    0600    0500   0722      0355    0705

Set         2037     0316  1841    2014  1719   2051    1532       2032    

In summary   

Mercury will be a challenging object visible low in the east during morning twilight.  Venus will be very close to Mercury during morning twilight and can be used to locate Mercury.

Mars is a morning object visible just before dawn in the east.

Jupiter is in conjunction with the Sun this month and its not visible.

Saturn is a morning object visible for a few hours before dawn – in the east. 

Uranus is in conjunction with the Sun this month.

Meteor Showers  There are no major meteor showers visible in May.

Bright Comet  

Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks is a 5th magnitude object in Taurus and is situated between Orion and Eridanus. It is only 25 degrees away from the Sun and is not visible as it is a daylight Comet at this time of year.

Comet 13P/Olbers is also in Taurus and – like Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks – is also a daylight Comet. There are no other Comets brighter than 10th magnitude visible in May

For further news on upcoming bright Comets please browse with website ….. https://in-the-sky.org/data/comets.php

The Stars at Midnight CEST from the Canaries Islands

North – Ursa Major is overhead. Ursa Minor is nicely placed with Cepheus below. Cygnus skirts the northern horizon. Also on show are Perseus, Cassiopeia, Draco and Hercules

East – Bootes, Canes Venatici and Leo are well placed – its still Galaxy Season. Virgo and Serpens are low down. Ophiuchus and Libra are also on view.

South – Leo and Virgo are all nicely placed. Corvus, Crater and the head of Hydra are low down  and you can locate one of the major Southern Constellations – Centaurus – which contains numerous Deep Sky Gems

West – the band of the Milky Way stretches across the horizon. Leo and Cancer are nicely placed. Canis Minor and Gemini – with Venus – are low down alongside Antlia – the Air-pump – and Pyxis – the Compass – from the southern hemisphere.

Other phenomena to look out for

With Summer almost here the focus for stargazers turns towards Noctilucent Clouds. These are so-called night-shining clouds and are visible only once the Sun has set.

There is lots of solar activity at the moment – sunspots and more – so if you have a Solar Filter check out the daily changes to Sunspots.

Night Sky View

Rendering from Carte du Ciel – Skycharts. en:start [Skychart] (ap-i.net)