Phoenix Astronomical Society

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Saturn at Opposition Star Party at PV Park - CANCELED!
Calendar: PAS Public Event Calendar
Event Posted By: Terri Finch  
03-07-2009 06:00 PM to 10:00 PM
6pm to 10pm

CANCELED! Due to impending Rain!!!

Opposition: a term used in positional astronomy to indicate when one celestial body is on the opposite side of the sky when viewed from a particular place (usually the Earth). In particular, two planets are in opposition to each other when their ecliptic longitudes differ by 180. Or, the Sun is on one side of the Earth while Saturn, in this case, is on the other side, creating an awesome view of Saturn.

Saturn is at Opposition on Mar 8th. We don't usually do star parties on Sunday nights, so this one is planned for the night before.

RSVP is with Rod.

If you are up for a challenge on this night, try sighting Saturn and Sigma Leonis with no aid of a telescope or binoculars. If you are unsuccessful, try again a few nights later. Seeing both the star & planet will be difficult because the closely-spaced points of light are of very different brightnesses. The planet will be a a mag of 0.5 which is 40 times brighter than Sigma.
We will attempt to show you both the star & planet on this night, together in the eyepiece.

At opposition this year, Saturn will shine about a full magnitude dimmer than maximum because its rings are nearly edge-on and thus they aren't reflecting the sun as they would be if we were seeing Saturn's rings as well as the planet. Seeing the planet's rings at edge on is a treat.


The RSVP deadline is set for 2pm on this date.
The reason there is a time limit is to allow for driving time to the event,
and set up time. Some events are an hour away and set up may take
an hour, depending on what is being set up.
If you wish to attend this event and miss the deadline,
you must Call in your RSVP to Rod no later than 4pm.
By 4pm, if no Public RSVP's have been received, the event will be canceled.

Weather Permitting. Event is canceled if no RSVP's.

17642 N 40th St, Phoenix, AZ
We meet at the parking area closest to SR 51 (Squaw Peak Parkway). When you pull in, follow road straight, and as it curves to the right, look to the left towards the bridge way over SR51, and we shall be there.

Other Visible objects in the sky on this night:

Sunset 6:15pm
Visible 6pm: Venus & Moon
Saturn rises 6:30pm
Dark 7:30pm
Venus sets 8:30pm

Because of our location at PV Park, Saturn will not be visible until about 7:30 this night, and Venus will set behind SR 51 around 7:30. So, if you plan to view either of those planets, I'd suggest you plan it around this schedule.

View Larger Map
RSVP'd No: 2
  • Terri Finch [11-25-2008 12:46 PM] - Previous commitment known about since Nov 2008.
  • rod_sutter [03-03-2009 07:37 PM] - 20% Chance of Rain, this is canceled for Saturday.
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