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Nearby planets to be flying low

Nearby planets to be flying low

Mercury will be very low in the morning twilight after mid-September. Venus will be very low in the west south west in the evening twilight. Mars is low in the south south west after dark and sets in the south west near 11pm. Jupiter is not observable in September. Saturn is low in the south west at dusk and sets in the west south west near 11pm.

With the start of our autumn lecture program the Sunshine Coast Astronomy Club welcomes Dr. Jon Willis to the Sechelt Arts Centre on Friday, Sept. 9 at 8pm.  Dr. Willis topic will be “All these Worlds are Yours”.

Dr. Willis is an associate Professor at the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Victoria. He is interested in giant clusters of galaxies both for what they can tell us about the large scale properties of the universe and the astrophysics of galaxy evolution.

On Saturday Sept. 10 the Sunshine Coast Observatory, which is located on the Sechelt Airport at the top of Field Road, will be open to the public. This is a wonderful opportunity to see the night sky through a very large telescope. Gates will be open at 8:30pm.

On Sept. 16 we shall see the full moon and this month it is The Harvest Moon. The Harvest Moon is the full moon that rises closest to the Autumn Equinox.

In our ongoing look at Astronomy terms we have two that may cause some confusion, Meteorite and Asteroid.

A Meteorite is an object, usually a chunk of metal or rock that survives entry through the atmosphere to Earth’s surface. Meteors become meteorites if they reach the ground.

An Asteroid is a small planetary body in orbit around the sun. Larger than a meteorite but smaller than a planet, most Asteroids are in a belt between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. The orbits of some Asteroids takes them close to the Sun which also takes them across the paths of the planets.

BRAVO is making a documentary about astronomy in small communities and is including the Sunshine Coast observatory and club. Filming took place in the Sechelt area August 11-13 and will be shown on a BRAVO channel Astronomical documentary later this year.

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