Mercury will not be observable in March although Venus will rise very low in the South East but will not be observable after mid month. Mars will rise in the East South East near 1am and transits in the South near dawn. Jupiter will be seen in the East in the evening twilight and transits near 1am and will be seen low in the West at dawn. Saturn rises in the South East after 2am and will be seen in the South near dawn.
Jupiter reaches opposition on March 8, the date Earth lies directlly between the Sun and Jupiter. This is the closest that Earth will get to Jupiter in 2016. Daylight savings time begins on Sunday March 13 at 2am and at 2:47am Jupiter with only Callisto visible will be quite clear. On Thursday, March 17 we will Celebrate St Patricks day when the Moon will occult Lambda Geminorum and will be seen just before dawn. On Wednesday, March 23 during a full moon known as the Worm Moon we will see a Penumbral Eclipse of the moon . This will be visible in the West of North America before sunrise. Saturday, March 26 will feature Earth Hour from 8:30 – 9:30 pm. Local activity can be found at www.earthhour.org On Monday, March 28 the Moon, Mars and Saturn will rise in a loose group and can be seen after midnight.
In keeping with our presentation of outstanding speakers The Sunshine Coast Centre is pleased to present Dr. Paul Hickson at the Arts Centre in Sechelt on Friday, March 11 at 8pm. Dr Hickson will speak on “In Search of First Light”. Dr Hickson is a Professor at the University of British Columbia and is The Chairman of The Thirty Meter Telescope Science Advisory Committee. He is a Past President of the Canadian Astronomical Society and is also a licensed pilot. Dr. Hickson is a major authority on very large telescopes .
The Sunshine Coast Centre will continue throughout the spring with a meeting at the Arts Centre in Sechelt on the 2nd Friday of every month and with Astro Cafe at the Davis Bay Seawall on the 3rd Friday.