Astronomy Aroostook County

Hello and welcome back to a new year of classes and adventures at the University of Maine at Presque Isle. Northern Maine is a great place to live and, if you like astronomy, it is a great place to be.  Northern Maine has rich dark skies full of stars and celestial events.

The University Times runs this ongoing series of articles about astronomy throughout the year.  The topics vary from edition to edition and will contain news related to astronomy and information about various sky events.  Although I have some articles in mind, I would like your input on possible articles.  If you have any questions or would like to suggest an article, please feel free to email me at jimamdbeckystepp@gmail.com.

Here are a couple of places you can go to find more information about astronomy in Aroostook County.

The Aroostook County Astronomy Club provides educational opportunities and occasional observing nights throughout the year.  Joining the local astronomy club is easy: just join their Facebook group “Aroostook County Astronomy Club.”  By joining this page, you will be able to receive interesting articles about astronomy, be notified of upcoming club events, receive information about celestial events and receive notifications about possible northern lights.

The Maine Solar System Model was dedicated in 2003.  At that time, it was the largest to scale solar system model on Earth.  Now it is the second largest.  One mile is equal to 93,000,000 miles in this 40+ miles model.  At this scale, the Earth is located near Percy’s Auto Sales one mile south of UMPI’s campus on Route 1.  For more information about the Maine Solar System Model, go to http://pages.umpi.edu/nmms/solar/.

The Francis Malcolm Science Center, located in Easton, Maine, has a planetarium and hosts occasional planetarium shows and observing nights. The science center is a great place to visit and, when possible, their shows will be listed here and on the astronomy club’s Facebook page.  For more information about the science center go to https://www.francismalcolmsciencecenter.com/.

Happy stargazing.

 

THE NIGHT SKY OVER AROOSTOOK COUNTY

 

All of the times and events listed below are from www.calsky.com.  You may register at this site and load your location (anywhere in the world) to be able to get event information and times.  The University of Maine at Presque Isle is located at 68d00m7.8s west longitude and 46d40m45.6s north latitude.

 

The International Space Station is visible as follows:

Morning – Until Sept. 16.

Evening – Sept. 18 to Oct. 12.

Morning – Oct. 23 to Nov. 12 .

 

To get a free sky chart, go to www.skymaps.com.

 

Sun and Planet Visibility

09/20/2019

06:15 Sunrise .

18:34 Sunset

18:48 – 19:00 Mercury.

18:36 – 18:54 Venus.

Not visible Mars.

18:42 – 21:54 Jupiter.

19:00 – 23:48 Saturn.

 

10/10/2019

06:42 Sunrise.

17:54 Sunset.

18:24 – 18:30 Mercury.

17:54 – 18:24 Venus.

05:36 – 06:12 Mars.

18:06 – 20:42 Jupiter.

18:24 – 22:30 Saturn .

 

09/12 @ 05:00 ISS passes 1.2 degrees from Alnilam (Epsilon Orion).

09/13 @ 04:11 ISS passes 0.5 degrees from Elmath/Al Nath (Beta Taurus).

09/13 @ 09:01 Mercury 0.3 degrees from Venus.

09/13 @ 09:16 Moon at apogee – farthest from the Earth (252,514.6 miles/406,382.8 km).

09/14 @ 00:32 Full moon.

09/21 @ 22:40 Last quarter moon.

09/23 @ 03:50 September Equinox – Fall begins in the northern hemisphere.

09:24 @ 19:58 ISS passes Arcturus (Alpha Bootes).

09/26 @ 06:00 Equilux – Equal day and night in Presque Isle, ME.
09/27 @ 22:17 Moon at perigee – closest to the Earth (222,324.0 miles/357,795.8 km).

09/28 @ 05:42 Comet 13P Olbers at perihelion – closest to the sun = Mag 7.2.

09/28 @ 14:26 New moon.

10/03 @ 02:12 Mercury at aphelion – farthest from the sun (43,382,500 miles/69,817.300 km).
10/05 @ 12:47 First quarter moon.

10/06 @ 19:00 Draconid Meteor Shower – 6 meteors/hr.

10/07 @ 19:00 Draconid Meteor Shower – 8.8 meteors/hr.

10/07 @ 21:08 Winter begins on Mars’ northern hemisphere.

10/08 @ 19:00 Draconid Meteor Shower – 11 meteors/hr.

10/09 @ 02:00 Draconid Meteor Shower Maximum – 12.4 meteors/hr.

10/09 @ 19:00 Draconid Meteor Shower – 10.4 meteors/hr.

10/10 @ 14:18 Moon at apogee – farthest from the Earth – (252,228.4 miles/405,922.2 km).

10/10 @ 19:00 Draconid Meteor Shower – 7.8 meteors/hr.

10/11 @ 19:00 Draconid Meteor Shower – 5.3 meteors/hr.

10/13 @ 17:07 Full moon.

10/20 @ 00:00 Mercury greatest elongation = 24.6 degrees east – visible in the evening sky.

10/20 @ 05:00 Orionid meteor shower – 6.3 meteors/hr.

10/21 @ 05:00 Orionid meteor shower – 8.8 meteors/hr.

10/21 @ 08:39 Last quarter moon.

10/22 @ 05:00 Orionid meteor shower – 10.5 meteors/hr.

10/22 @ 10:00 Orionid meteor shower – 10.6 meteors/hr.

10/23 @ 05:00 Orionid meteor shower – 9.8 meteors/hr.

10/24 @ 05:00 Orionid meteor shower – 7.4 meteors/hr.

10/25 @ 05:00 Orionid meteor shower – 5.2 meteors/hr.

10/25 @ 06:03 ISS passes 0.9 degrees from the moon.

10/25 @ 08:06 Mercury at half phase.

10/26 @ 06:31 Moon at perigee – closest to the Earth (224,498.9 miles/361,295.9 km).
10/27 @ 06:01 ISS passes 0.4 degrees from Betelgeuse (Alpha Orion).

10/27 @ 23:38 New moon.

10/28 @ 04:02 Uranus at opposition – directly behind the Earth.

10/31 Mercury 2.5 degrees from Venus.