Moon and Venus on April 17 to 19 | 4/17/2018 | Bruce McClure
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For the next few evenings, – April 17 to 19, 2018 – look for some gorgeous pairings of the moon and brightest planet Venus. You’ll find them in the west shortly after the sun goes down.

The moon and Venus rank as the second- and third-brightest celestial objects, respectively, after the sun. You’ll want an unobstructed western horizon to see them, and you’ll want to be outside close to the time of sunset, because Venus will soon follow the sun below the western horizon. As for the moon, it’ll be very near Venus on April 17, moving up and away from Venus on April 18 and 19.

April - Notice - Crescent - Moon - Aldebaran

On April 18, notice that the waxing crescent moon is closer to Aldebaran, the brightest star in the constellation Taurus the Bull. From just the right spot on Earth, you can actually watch the moon occult (cover over) Aldebaran. On the night of April 18-19, 2018, Aldebaran will disappear behind the moon’s dark side and then reappear on its illuminated side.

The chart below shows who will see the occultation.

Worldwide - Map - Occultation - Aldebaran - IOTA

Worldwide map of the occultation of Aldebaran via IOTA. You have to be far north in North America to see the moon occult Aldebaran in a dark sky. Click here for more information.

As you watch the waxing crescent moon, Venus and Aldebaran over the next several days, pay special attention to the lunar terminator, the line between light and dark on the moon’s face. On a waxing moon,...
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