Moon close to the Sickle of Leo
Late at evening on January 9, 2023 – and early within the morning on January 10 – you’ll discover the waning gibbous moon glowing within the course of the Sickle of Leo the Lion. The moon’s vivid, glowing presence will make it tougher to identify the dimmer Sickle stars. So begin by in search of Regulus, Leo’s brightest star, which needs to be seen, shining within the moon’s glare.
Word that the Sickle has a particular form, that of a backwards query mark. And Regulus marks the interval on the backside of the backward query mark sample.
In actual fact, Regulus is the one 1st-magnitude star that sits virtually proper on the ecliptic, the trail the solar follows by way of the sky. So Regulus is usually close to a vivid planet and might even be occulted (coated over) by the moon.
The moon shall be proper beside the subsequent star up on the Sickle, dim Eta Leonis. However the star that marks the decrease curve of the Sickle is magnitude 2.1 Algieba. Are you able to make it out after which hint the remainder of the Sickle’s form?
The view from the Southern Hemisphere
In the event you’re south of the equator, the Sickle seems like an the other way up and backward query mark. As you’ll be able to see, relying in your location on Earth, the view of the evening sky modifications barely. So, should you’re within the Southern Hemisphere, flip our maps the other way up for a extra correct view. Or strive Stellarium for a exact star chart out of your location.
Available now! 2023 EarthSky lunar calendar. A unique and beautiful poster-sized calendar showing phases of the moon every night of the year! Makes a great gift.
Backside line: You’ll be able to spot the waning gibbous moon close to the Sickle of Leo the Lion and its brightest star, Regulus, on the morning of January 10, 2023.
For more great observing events in the coming weeks, visit EarthSky’s night sky guide
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