Sky & Telescope - January 2022 - 47

+30°
+40°
+10°
+20°
0°
LIBRA
-10°
Venus
Mars
-30°
-40°
10 am
28
SAGITTARIUS
SCORPIUS
8 am
Antares
6 am
4 am
2 am
Midnight
25
Spica
CORVUS
HYDRA
CANIS
MAJOR
10 pm
8 pm
Fomalhaut
LOCAL TIME OF TRANSIT
6 pm
4 pm
2 pm
18h
16h
Vega
HERCULES
AQUILA
14h
BOÖTES
Arcturus
22
OPHIUCHUS
VIRGO
LEO
PEGASUS
Uranus
Regulus
CANCER
Procyon
ORION
Rigel
Sirius
ERIDANUS
CETUS
Jan 6
EQUATOR
TAURUS
Betelgeuse
PISCES
9
Neptune
Jupiter
Saturn
AQUARIUS
Mercury
CAPRICORNUS
-30°
-40°
The Sun and planets are positioned for mid-January; the colored arrows show the motion of each during the month. The Moon is plotted for evening
dates in the Americas when it's waxing (right side illuminated) or full, and for morning dates when it's waning (left side illuminated). " Local time
of transit " tells when (in Local Mean Time) objects cross the meridian - that is, when they appear due south and at their highest - at mid-month.
Transits occur an hour later on the 1st, and an hour earlier at month's end.
and Jupiter as well as Venus and Mercury.
Think of it: in a single view you
can see four of the five bright naked-eye
planets. Impressive! Saturn glows at
magnitude +0.7 from its perch near the
middle of Capricornus, while Jupiter is
roughly 20° away and, at magnitude
-2.1, utterly dominates Aquarius.
FRIDAY, JANUARY 7
Today Mercury reaches its greatest
elongation from the Sun, when it sits
19° east of our home star. This marks
the climax of an apparition that began
in December and is the first of four
evening showings in 2022. Catch
Mercury while you can because you'll
have to wait until April for another
shot at it at dusk. (That apparition will
be the planet's finest for the year.) And
though the date of greatest elongation
tends to be the one that gets the most
attention, more often than not Mercury
Dawn, Jan 28 - 30
30 minutes before sunrise
Venus
Mars
SAGITTARIUS
Mercury
Moon
Jan 30
Looking Southeast
is higher above the horizon a few days
before or after that date. In this case,
the difference is small. For observers at
mid-northern latitudes, Mercury is very
slightly higher at dusk on the 9th than
this evening.
Moon
Jan 29
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 12
If you've been watching Mercury regularly,
you'll have noticed that it's been
getting closer and closer to Saturn.
Mercury has been climbing higher while
Saturn has been sinking lower, and at
dusk today the two worlds are at their
closest with a little less than 3½° separating
them. (They'll be nearly as close
tomorrow evening, too.) The two are
similarly bright, with Mercury shining
at magnitude 0.0 and Saturn at magnitude
+0.7. Given the pair's low altitude
(45 minutes after sunset it's just 6°),
you'll probably find that binoculars
make spotting them much easier. After
this meet-andgreet,
Mercury
will pull away as
it plunges sunward
for its solar
conjunction on
the 23rd. Saturn is
moving at a more
leisurely pace and
won't have its date
with the Sun until
February 4th.
Later this
Moon
Jan 28
evening turn your
attention toward
the waxing gibbous
Moon, riding high in the south.
About 4° above the bright lunar disk is
the clutch of stars known as the Pleiades,
or M45. (The cluster is also known
as the Seven Sisters, as readers of Fred
Schaaf's December column will recall.)
Glare from the 80%-illuminated Moon
will make the cluster stars a bit harder
to notice, so don't be afraid to pull out
your binoculars again.
SATURDAY, JANUARY 29
Let's wrap up the month the way we
started - in the dawn sky with the
Moon and Mars, which are now joined
by a post-solar-conjunction Venus. Of
all the January solar-system gatherings,
this is probably the most striking.
Certainly, it's the easiest one to see,
apart from the bit about having to get
up early in the morning. Any time you
have the Moon and Venus together,
it's going to attract attention - even if
they're quite far apart, as they are on
this occasion when they're separated
by about 13°. The scene is enhanced by
the Morning Star's extreme brightness
(magnitude -4.8) and the subtle beauty
of earthshine lighting up the " dark "
portion of the lunar disk. And let's not
forget Mars, shining gamely at magnitude
1.4, upper left of the Moon. When
we last looked in on the Red Planet it
was visiting Antares, but since then it
has motored eastward more than 20°.
¢ Consulting Editor GARY SERONIK is
more than happy to greet the new year
with his solar system friends.
sk yand tele scope .o r g * JANUARY 2022
47
12h
RIGHT ASCENSION
17 -18
10h
8h
Castor
Jan Pollux
13 Pleiades
ARIES
+20°
+10°
0°
GEMINI
6h
4h
2h
0h
22h
CYGNUS
+30°
+40°
DECLINATION
E
C
L
I
P
T I C
https://skyandtelescope.org/

Sky & Telescope - January 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Sky & Telescope - January 2022

Contents
Sky & Telescope - January 2022 - Cover1
Sky & Telescope - January 2022 - Cover2
Sky & Telescope - January 2022 - 1
Sky & Telescope - January 2022 - Contents
Sky & Telescope - January 2022 - 3
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Sky & Telescope - January 2022 - Cover3
Sky & Telescope - January 2022 - Cover4
Sky & Telescope - January 2022 - SA1
Sky & Telescope - January 2022 - SA2
Sky & Telescope - January 2022 - SA3
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Sky & Telescope - January 2022 - SA5
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Sky & Telescope - January 2022 - SA8
Sky & Telescope - January 2022 - SA9
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