July 2009
« Jun   Aug »


Chasing Galileo - 17/18-day old moon

Eighteen-day moon

Eighteen-day moon

The moon rises later each evening now. That means a late night for sketchers. Luckily my small 70mm Televue Ranger on a telepod mount requires no setup. I keep it permanently set up in the garage.

The features I’ve sketched on the 18-day moon begin with sunset on Mare Crisium – on the terminator to the left on my sketch. Plato is the dark oval at north (top), with Mare Frigoris encircling it to the north.

The large mare closer to the terminator are Mare Serinitatis and Mare Tranquillatis. Mare Nectaris is the oval sea south of Tranquillatis. Mare Imbrium is the largest lunar basin on the moon – the large feature below (south of) Plato. It’s between Plato to the north and Copernicus and Kepler to the south.

Grimaldi, one of my favorite lunar features is the dark oval flooded basin to the right, south of Kepler. On nights of favorable libration, beyond Grimaldi, the ridges of Mare Orientale appear. Did I leave out Tycho? It is the magnificent crater to the south of Mare Nubium. Tycho’s long rays span 1800 km from Tycho to the small crater Rosse in Mare Nectaris. You can actually follow the ray to Rosse in my sketch!

There is so much to see and study on a the moon, especially if you have a lunar map. The nights after the full moon are wonderful lunar observing nights, if only you can stay up to observe on them!

Leave a Reply




You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>