Fri., April 18 5:57 7:25
Sat., April 19 5:56 7:26
Sun., April 20 5:54 7:27
Mon., April 21 5:53 7:28
Tues., April 22 5:51 7:29
Wed., April 23 5:50 7:30
Thurs., April 24 5:48 7:31
Fri., April 25 5:47 7:32
The gibbous moon moves up beside the brightly ringed planet Saturn on Monday and Tuesday evenings. The two are in the zodiacal constellation Leo. The bright star Regulus is nearby.
The red planet Mars appears in the zodiacal constellation Gemini, high in the west. The earth’s near neighbor forms a triangle with Pollux and Castor, two of the brightest stars in the constellation Gemini. The stars are named for twins in mythology. Castor is the brighter of the two stars.
One of the bright stars of spring is Arcturus, now rising in the east. Arcturus is slightly orange in color and outshines all the stars in that area of the sky. The Big Dipper, which is overhead and upside down, can help single out that star. The Big Dipper handle points to the east and to Arcturus.
Arcturus is the principal star in the constellation Bootes, the shepherd. Bootes is a group of stars that portray a kite. Though in mythology Bootes is a human, in the sky the constellation looks like a big kite with Arcturus at the bottom of the kite.
Arcturus is 36 light years away. The star is huge, hot and bright. If it were to take the place of our sun, the earth would be scorched and lifeless.