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Sky Events for:

    December - 2022

12/01         Mars is nearest to Earth at just over .5 AU (AU = distance from Earth to Sun)

                       Evening:  Moon is 2.8° SE of Neptune.

                       Evening:  Moon is 2.25° SE of Jupiter.

12/05        Evening:  Moon is .65°  N of Uranus.

12/06        Evening:  Moon is ~ 3° SE of the Pleiades.

12/07       Full Moon:  December is called “Cold Moon”, ”Oak Moon”, and “Long Nights Moon”

                    ****    Mars at opposition.  (Opposite the Sun).  Also this month is this years near

                                 approach to Earth.

                    ****    Mars Occultation.  The Moon will cover Mars.  Depending on your location,

                                timing will be slightly  different.  For Mid New Mexico, Mars will disappear

                                at 7:41 pm MST.  For Denver 7:43pm.  The occultation will last about an hour,

                                 and then Mars will reappear on the other side of the Moon.  It is interesting

                                to watch how different the motion of the Moon and the rest of the sky

                                moves.  For the Mountain Standard Time region, start watching early 7:15 –

                                7:30 and see the Moon move closer and closer to Mars, and then occult it.

                                This event can be viewed naked eye, although binoculars or a telescope will

                                give a much clearer view of when Mars actually slips behind the Moon.  With

                                Mars at opposition, this is an ideal time to view more detail on Mars with a

                               telescope.  Lets hope for clear skies to enjoy this event.  For cities further to
                               the East in the US, Mars will just skim below the Moon.  In New Orleans, for

                               instance, Mars will be 3’ below the Moon.  With closest separation at 9:11


12/08       Earliest sunset at 40° North Latitude.

12/10        Evening:  The Moon, Castor and Pollux will form a triangle as they rise in the


12/14        Morning:  Geminid Meteor shower.  While you’re out, before sunrise, look to the
                      south to see the Moon ~ 4° from Regulus.

12/16       Last quarter Moon

12/18       Morning:  Moon ~ 4° NNE of Spica near the southeastern horizon.

12/21       December Solstice (winter in northen hemisphere)  2:48 pm MST.  

                     Evening:  Mercury at easternmost elongation.

12/22       Morning:  Moon ~2° NNE of Antares.

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