Morning Jupiter and Spica


Image from my archives.

January 30th, 2017, 6:20 a.m. local time

The morning’s predawn sky was shockingly clear, not a cloud in the sky.  Most stars were gone.  But high and bright in the Southwest was mighty Jupiter.  Very near, below and to the South, was Spica.  I have not seen Spica (or at least identified it) since the Autumn.

I went inside to grab my binoculars to view Jupiter.  After a focus adjustment, it came in large and bright.  And I was able to see one of its moons on my left/towards the East.  If I had more time I would have tried to spot the other moons.

Observation: the early morning sky is the least effected by light pollution.  This is because most of my neighbors’ lights are off by 2-3 a.m. each night.  The worst offenders are the unshielded street lights.  The more I think about it, the more I believe the main sources of stray photons are streetlights and commercials floodlights.  If only they were all off, what a difference it would make!


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