"Pillaging the Universe One Star at a Time"

 

The 2014 Bootleg Star Party was a Huge Success!!  

Watch for the pictures from the 2014 Bootleg Star Party -- Coming Soon.... 

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Bootleg 2014 Pictures

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Texas Star Party 2009

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Upcoming Observing Highlights for August 2014   (from skymaps.com)
 
2 Moon near Spica (evening sky) at 15h UT.
3 Moon near Mars (evening sky) at 11h UT. Mag. +0.4.
4 First Quarter Moon at 00:50 UT.
4 Moon very near Saturn (evening sky) at 11h UT. Mag. +0.5. Occultation visible from Australia.
Occultation of Saturn (IOTA)
6 Moon near Antares (evening sky) at 3h UT.
7 Venus 6.5 S of Pollux (21 from Sun, morning sky) at 2h UT. Mags. -3.9 and +1.2.
10 Moon at perigee (closest to Earth) at 18h UT (356,896 km; angular size 33.5'). Nearest in 2014.
10 Full Moon at 18:10 UT. Largest Supermoon of 2014.
Supermoon (Wikipedia)
Full Moon Names (Wikipedia)
13 Perseid meteor shower maximum predicted between 0h and 3h UT. Active from July 17 to August 24. Produces swift, bright meteors (50 to 100 per hour) many with persistent trains. Moonlight spoils viewing conditions this year.
Observing the Perseids (Gary Kronk)
Meteor Shower Calendar (IMO)
17 Last Quarter Moon at 12:26 UT.
17 Moon near the Pleiades (morning sky) at 22h UT.
The Pleiades (Wikipedia)
18 Venus 0.21 N of Jupiter (18 from Sun, morning sky) at 4h UT. Mags. -3.9 and -1.8. Most spectacular planet-planet conjunction in 2014.
18 Moon near Aldebaran (morning sky) at 20h UT.
23 Moon near Beehive Cluster (23 from Sun, morning sky) at 12h UT.
23 Moon, Venus and Jupiter within circle diameter 6 (18 from Sun, morning sky) at 19h UT. Mags. -3.9 and -1.8. Spectacular. Very low in eastern pre-dawn sky.
24 Moon at apogee (farthest from Earth) at 6h UT (distance 406,523 km; angular size 29.4').
25 New Moon at 14:13 UT. Start of lunation 1134.
Lunation Number (Wikipedia)
25 Mars 3.4 SSW of Saturn (75 from Sun, evening sky) at 18h UT. Mags. +0.6 and +0.6.
29 Moon near Spica (evening sky) at 21h UT.
31 Moon very near Saturn (evening sky) at 19h UT. Mag. +0.6. Occultation visible from central West Africa.
Occultation of Saturn (IOTA)
>>> All times Universal Time (UT).    USA Central Standard Time = UT-6 hours.  (DST = UT-5 hrs,)

 

Zodiacal Light is caused by sunlight reflected off meteoric dust in the plane of the solar system. Choose a clear, moonless night, about 1-2 hours after sunset, and look for a large triangular-shaped glow extending up from the horizon (along the ecliptic). The best months to view the Zodiacal Light is when the ecliptic is almost vertical at the horizon: March and April (evening) and October-November (morning); times reversed for the southern hemisphere.
Zodiacal Light (Wikipedia)
Astronomy Picture of the Day (APOD)
Photographing the Zodiacal Light (Weatherscapes)