Conjunction of the Moon and Aldebaran

2015-2-Moon-Aldebaran-A

 

On the evening of Wednesday, February 25, there will be a VERY close conjunction of the First Quarter Moon with the bright star Aldebaran, in Taurus. This event will favor eastern North America, so folks in the eastern time zone of the USA and Canada will have the best view. Europeans will be able to see the approach of the Moon toward Aldebaran, before moonset.

An occultation of Aldebaran by the Moon will be seen from northern Canada, Greenland and Iceland, where the Moon covers over the bright star for about an hour.

This is a great opportunity to observe the very rapid motion of the Moon across the night sky. The Moon traverses the 360 degree circle of the zodiac every month, which is 720 lunar diameters, or 24 lunar diameters per day, or one lunar diameter every hour.

After observing the closest approach between the Half Moon and Aldebaran, go outside an hour later to see how much the Moon has moved to the east during that time. You can keep checking til the Moon sets, around midnight. By that time, the Moon will be quite a distance from Aldebaran.

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