March 1st: Day 60 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1927, George Abell, that catalogued 2712 galactic clusters was born.
In 1967, the russian probe Venera 3 became the first to impact on another planet when it reaches Venus and fails before sending any data back.
In 1980, the Voyager 1 probe confirms the existence of Janus, a moon of Saturn.
In 1982, the russian probe Venera 13 send back the first coloured images of Venus (Venera 14 followed her 4 days later).
In 2002, mission STS-109 was launched with the task of making the maintenance of Hubble Space Telescope.
Observations: Mars and Saturn rise together shortly after dark.
March 2nd: Day 61 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1972, the american probe Pioneer 10 is launched. It should be the first probe to reach planet Jupiter Júpiter in 1973 and the first to leave the Solar System. Pioneer 10 transports a plate drawned to identendify its origin. In 2003, the emissions from Pioneer 10 were heard for the last time.
Observations: Moon still near Saturn but closer to Spica this night.
March 3rd: Day 62 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1959, the probePioneer 4, was lauched to study the Moon Moon with success. It missed the Moon by 59,500 km instead of the expected 32,000 km.
Observations:Use the Big Deaper to find Polaris and observe using a telescope. Can you see Polaris B?
Polaris B can be seen even with a modest telescope and was first noticed by William Herschel in 1780.
March 4th: Day 63 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1835 Giovanni Schiaparelli, director of the Osservatorio de Milano was born. Schiaparelli made the Mars Canali famous.
In 1979, the probe Voyager 1 discovers Jupiter's rings.
In 1999, Earth's flyby of the asteroid 1998 VD35(distance 0.169 UA).
Observations: Today there is a lunar occultation of Nausikaa that is only visible from North Pacific Ocean.
Here is an observational issue for tonight. A question that is frequently made by beginners is “How can I distinguish Ursa Minor and Ursa Major?” The answer for this is that, if you’re seeing only one dipper, it’s probably the Big Dipper in the constellation Ursa Major. This asterism is very familiar to astronomers because it really does look like a dipper.Ursa Minor, which contains the Little Dipper asterism, is much harder to see. because the dipper shape isn’t so obvious and its stars are fainter. North Star is the last star in its handle of the Little Dipper and usually two other stars (Kochab and Pherkad that are the front of the dipper) can be seen even in small cities. See how you might find them tonight here.
March 5th: Day 64 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1512 Gerardus Mercator, a famous cartographer was born.
In 1979 the first gamma ray burst, from magnetares was observed. in the same year, the Voyager probe made its biggest appproach to Jupiter when it approached at 206,700 km from the top of the planet's clouds.
Observations: Lunar Occultation of Victoria that can be seen in western Europe, Asia and Oceania .
March 6th: Day 65 of the gregorian calendar.
History: Today we celebrate the 1787 birth on this date of Joseph Fraunhofer that can be considered the father of astronomical spectroscopy. While designing the achromatic objective lens for telescopes that is still used today , he saw the spectrum of sunlight as it passed through a thin slit and the dark emission lines. Fraunhofer recognized that they could be used as wavelength standards. He designed and built the very first diffraction grating and is known for giving letters to the main lines in the high resolution spectrum of the Sun.
Observations: Try to find Arcturus the "herald" of Spring.
March 7th: Day 66 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1837 Henry Draper, was born.He was the first astronomer to make pictures of the stellar spectrum estelar. An important catalog of stars is also named after him.
Observations: Moon reaches Last Quarter at 15h42 (TDT). Lunar occultations of Athamantis and Urania almost only visible from Antartica. Lunar occultation of Leto visible from the Continent of Oceania.
March 8th: Day 67 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1977 Uranus rings were discovered during NASA's aerial occultation observations.
In 1999, began the first phase of Mars maping by the probe Mars Global Surveyor.
Observations: Try to see the Coma star cluster (Melotte111) in the constellation of Coma Berenice, an open cluster, estimated to be about 288 light years away that has at least 37 known stars that are 400 million years old. It is the third-closest open cluster to our Earth and sun. The cluster can be seen with naked eye, but vision will be improved using binoculars.
March 9th: Day 68 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1564, David Fabricius was born.,He discovered the first variable star (Mira, a.k.a. Omicron Ceti).
In 1974, flyby of Mars by the russian probe Mars 7.
Observations: Tonight point your telescope to the Orion Nebula.
March 10th: Day 69 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1999, closest approach of comet C/1998 M5 (LINEAR) to Earth (1,534 UA).
Observations: Lunar occultation of Patientia partially visible from Portugal and Spain. The lunar occultation of Themis will not be visible from Europe.
March 11th: Day 70 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1811, Urbain Le Verrier, that predicted the existence of Neptune, was born.
In 1897, a meteorite entered in the atmosphere over New Martinsville (West Virgínia) and its debris smahed all over this town with heavy losts.
Observations: Mars is stationary.
March 12th: Day 71 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1824, Gustav Kirchhoff was born.
Observations: Moon is at Apogee at a distance of 406011km from Earth at 10h (UT). The lunar occultation of Hera is not visible from Europe.
March 13th: Day 72 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 2000, lonely black holes were discovered drifting along the Galaxy.
Observations: The lunar occultation of Klotho is not visible from Europe.
March 14th: Day 73 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1879, Albert Einstein was born.
In 1969, the Apollo 9 mission returned to Earth after testing the lunar module.
Observations: New Moon at 02h53(TDT). The conjunction of Neptune and Sun occurs at 17h (UT).
March 15th: Day 74 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1713 Nicolas Lacaille was born. His measuremente, confirmed that Earth was not a perfect sphere; he gave the name to 14 constellations of the Southern Hemisphere.
In 1972, NASA anounced its Space Shuttle Program.
Observations: Use your telescope to see Saturn's rings.
March 16th: Day 75 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1926, a rocket launched by Robert H. Goddard becomes the first rocket running on liquid fuel and convinces Goddard that one day Man will eventually land on the Moon.
In 1966 the Gemini 8 was launched and makes the first space docking (with Agena).
In 1999, the team of the Lunar Prospector at NASA Ames Research Center anounces that most of the Moon is materail ejected from Earth as result of an impact with an object of nearly the size of Mars.
Observations: The Moon can be seen as a wanning crescent immediately after sunset. The bright object close to the Moon is Venus.
March 17th: Day 76 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1958, Vanguard 1, the first probe working on solar power was launched.
Observations: Use your telescope and camera, a webcam or a CCD and make some pictures of the Moon and Venus. You can send them to us and we will post them on the EAAE webpage with due credit.
March 18th: Day 77 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1965, Aleksei Leonov becomes the first man to walk in space after leaving Voskod 2 for about 12 minutes.
In 1980, a Vostok rocket prepared for refueling explodes on the launch platform killing 50 persons.
Observations: Use your telescope and camera, a webcam or a CCD and make some pictures of Saturn. You can send them to us and we will post them on the EAAE webpage with due credit.
March 19th: Day 78 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1915, Pluto was photografed for the first time but it was not identified as a planet.
Observations: Tonight try to find M50 (read "Advanced Astronomical Observations" section).
March 20th: Day 79 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1916, the Theory of General Relativity was published.
In 1964 ESRO (European Space Research Organization) was founded. This agency was the the first step for the birth of ESA (European Space Agency).
Observations: The March equinox marks the beginning of Spring on that special moment when the sun crosses celestial equator, on its apparent from south to north. It happens today at 17h32(UT).
The lunar occultation of Eros is visble from almost all Europe but unfortunately during daytime.
March 21st: Day 80 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1901 the first nova of the 20th century was discovered.
It was discovered by the amateur astronomer T. D. Anderson and was the first nova to be studied photometrically.
Observations: Use your telescope and camera, a webcam or a CCD and make some pictures of M50 as sugested in "Advanced Astronomical Observations". You can send them to us and we will post them on the EAAE webpage with due credit.
March 22nd: Day 81 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1799 F.W.A. Argelander was born.
In 1995, the cosmonaut Valeryiv Polyakov returns to Earth after breaking the record of the longest stay on Mir (438 days).
In 1996, the STS-76 missionof Space Shuttle Atlantis was launched carrying aboard Shannon Lucid that became the first woman abord a Space Station.
Observations: First Quarter at 00h42 (TDT). Saturn is in opposition at 00h (UT). The lunar occultation of Hermione is not visible from Europe.
March 23rd: Day 82 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1840 the first picture (daguerreotype) of the Moon was taken.
In 1912 Wenher Von Braun was born.
In 1965, the USA launched the Gemini 3 probe up to orbit carrying Virgil (Gus) Grissom and John W. Young.
In 2001, Space Station Mir, at the age of 15, was taken out of orbit and brought back to Earth.
Observations: Moon at First Quarter at 10h(UT).
March 24th: Day 83 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1893, Walter Baade was born.
Observations: Tonight make some pictures of the Orion constellation.
March 25th: Day 84 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1665 the biggest moon of Saturn, Titan was discovered.
Observations: Palas is stationary at 02h(UT). Mars 5º north from the Moon. Neither the lunar occultation of Eleonora nor the lunar occultation of Angelina is visible from Europe.
March 26th: Day 85 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1958, United States Army launches the Explorer 3.
Observations: Use binoculars to look at the Pleiades. Try to make a picture of them.
March 27th: Day 86 of the gregorian calendar.
History:. In 1969, the probe Mariner 7 was launched.
Observations: The lunar occultation of Echo is not visible from Europe.
March 28th: Day 87 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1749 Pierre Laplace was born.
In 1993 supernova remnant in galáxia M81 (Ursa Maior) was discovered by the spanish amateur astronomer Francisco Garcia Diaz.
Observations: Moon is at Perigee at a distance of 361877km from Earth at 05h(UT).
March 29th: Day 88 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1807, Vesta, the brightest asteroid of the Solar System was discovered by Olbers.
In 1974, first flyby of Mercury by the Mariner 10 probe.
Observations: Saturn at 8ºN from the Moon at 18h (UT)
March 30th: Day 89 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 240 BC was recorded for the the first time the observation of Halley's comet at perihelion .
Observations: Full Moon at 02h26 (TDT).
March 31st: Day 90 of the gregorian calendar.
History: In 1781, William Herschel finds Uranus, the first planet to be discovered since the Babilonian civilization.
Observations: Mars is at aphelion at 00h(UT).