View Full Version : October New Moon Spotting

2010-Oct-06, 10:51 PM
Who will be the first to spot the October New Moon with naked eyes after sunset? The Dark Moon will be in geocentric longitudinal conjunction with the Sun on 2010 OCT 07 at 18:44 UT (13:44 CDT). We’re still near the autumnal equinox, which is the poorest time of year for sighting really young Moons from north of the tropics. Again this month the waxing crescent Moon will be near its maximum latitude south of the ecliptic, which increases the negative effect of the ecliptic’s sharp intersection with the dusk horizon at this time of year.

Again North Americans will likely find it impossible to spot the Moon until it is more than two days old on October 9. It will be interesting to see who accepts and succeeds with another tough challenge this month.

I’ve created a graphic previewing the western sky from Chicagoland after sunset on October 9. It should well serve most North American observers. Mars will appear about 4° above the two-day-old Moon, while brilliant Venus will be setting about 4° beneath it. The effect of the Old Moon in the New Moon’s Arms may not be so obvious against a rather bright twilight background. The following evening may be better for that. The preview can be seen by clicking: http://www.curtrenz.com/astronomical then going to the Moon page.

Photos and descriptions of the October New Moon would be welcome additions to this thread. Please include the date, time, time zone and location. Good Luck!

Below is a photo I took from Arlington Heights, Illinois after sunset on 2007 SEP 13 of a 2.5-day-old Moon under circumstances similarly difficult to this month.