[ASC-media] RE: Stars, planets, and naked-eye visibility

Paul Floyd actskywatch at optusnet.com.au
Mon Jan 6 08:04:08 EST 2003

Hi all,

For those interested in testing their eyesight on the planets, Jupiter
reaches opposition on February 2nd. It will have an apparent size of 45.5
arc seconds. See if you can see a disc. It will be the very bright star low
above the North-East horizon at the end of evening twilight.

Nick, you can consider me suitably impressed. Are there any text books you
can refer me to (good trivia for my site)?


Paul Floyd.

-----Original Message-----
From: asc-media-admin at lists.justnet.info
[mailto:asc-media-admin at lists.justnet.info]On Behalf Of Nick Hoffman
Sent: Monday, 6 January 2003 2:02 AM
To: asc-media at lists.justnet.info
Cc: actskywatch at optusnet.com.au
Subject: [ASC-media] RE: Stars, planets, and naked-eye visibility

Thanks for the sample from the StarFest booklet, Paul,

However I must pull you up on one point. Planets are NOT point sources
of light to a (good) naked eye. Jupiter, Venus, and sometimes Saturn can
be resolved as tiny disks. Indeed, Venus can be seen in crescent phase
as a distinctly non-circular object.

Mind you, I do have 40/20 vision, but so did some of the ancient
astronomers and sky watchers.

      - Nick

Nick Hoffman                                 Geophysics Expert
3D-GEO Research Lab
School of Earth Sciences
University of Melbourne
Parkville, Australia 3010

Phone:   +61 3 8344 3735
Fax:       +61 3 8344 7761
Mobile:   0438 397 366



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