Uranus Viewing, 2020

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Christopher K.
Posts: 5517
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Uranus Viewing, 2020

Post by Christopher K. »

Uranus's opposition in 2020 occurs during the 11am hour on 31 October. Accordingly, the Uranian Opposition viewing at HRPO will be
*Friday 30 October from 7:45pm to 9:45pm CDT. Uranus will be in the constellation Aries and will begin the session eighteen degrees above the horizon. The waxing gibbous Moon, Mars, Ceres, Pallas, Jupiter, Saturn and Neptune will also be in the night sky.

The event will have no admission fee and will be for all ages.

Information for other 2020 planet viewing:
http://hrpo.lsu.edu/programs/planet_times.html

Christopher K.
Posts: 5517
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Uranus Viewing, 2020

Post by Christopher K. »

Did you hear? Uranus is weirder than we thought. It's outrageous side-spin apparently was just the beginning. Investigation of 1986 Voyager data is still revealing secrets, including the fact that Uranus' magnetic field is wonkier than just its twisty wobble.

More information:
https://voyager.jpl.nasa.gov/

We'll be seeing Uranus in our morning sky beginning mid-July.

Christopher K.
Posts: 5517
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Uranus Viewing, 2020

Post by Christopher K. »

Uranus may be spotted by saavy binocular holders tonight, but only with a very low horizon and only if the NOAA forecast is incorrect! One might (and I mean might) spy Uranus with a 10x50 held extremely steady, about eleven degrees up in the west at 8:00pm CDT--but the viewer would have to have previous experience accomplishing such feats.

Here is the NOAA forecast for 9pm CDT...
precipitation potential, 11%
sky cover, 92%
relative humidity, 66%
temperature, 21˚C
surface wind, E 8 km/h

Danko's Clear Dark Sky states that during HRPO's viewing time both the transparency rating and the seeing rating will be "too cloudy to forecast" (0 out of 5). This just is not the bad news you want to hear when getting ready for an evening of planet viewing. By contrast, the clouds should break just enough to get a little twilight gazing in tomorrow morning from about 6:15am to 6:45am.

Christopher K.
Posts: 5517
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Uranus Viewing, 2020

Post by Christopher K. »

Halloween weekend 2020 is prime time for Uranus. Friday the 30th it is at the top of the HRPO marquee, while on Saturday the 31st it shares the stage with other "luminaries". It truly is a delightful sight; don't miss it.

Christopher K.
Posts: 5517
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Uranus Viewing, 2020

Post by Christopher K. »

Phase Three restrictions are still being imposed on HRPO...
*All people who are not part of the same household must stay at least six feet apart from one another.
*Only fifty (50) patrons are allowed on site at any one time.
*Only twelve (12) patrons are allowed inside the main floor at any one time.
*No patron will be allowed inside the main floor unless he/she agrees to a temperature scan and wears a mask.
*Only one (1) patron will be allowed inside each bathroom at any one time.
*There is a strict time limit of thirty minutes for each patron’s visit.

Sunset is at 6:17pm CDT; twilight ends 7:40pm CDT. Below is the NOAA forecast for HRPO's planned viewing time of 7:45pm to 9:45pm...
precipitation potential, 0%
sky cover, 3%
relative humidity, 77%
temperature, 14˚C
surface wind, N 5 km/h

Danko's Clear Dark Sky states that during HRPO's viewing time the transparency rating will be "transparent" (5 out of 5) and the seeing rating will be "average" (3 out of 5).

Uranus starts the viewing period twenty-two degrees up in the east; as it is rising the last hour (8:45pm to 9:45pm) will be best as a patron will be looking through less atmosphere. The planet will be magnitude 5.7! HRPO closes at 9:45pm.

The 30 October 2020 rating is...
EXCELLENT
VERY GOOD
GOOD
FAIR
POOR
BAD

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