A Good Time to Observe Dwarf Planet Ceres
On March 21, we have a great opportunity to observe the dwarf planet Ceres. It will be at opposition, which means it will reach the highest point in the sky at around midnight and opposite to the Sun. At the same time Ceres will be closest to the Earth (perigee) at a distance of 1.59 AU. At this time it will be the brightest, with an absolute magnitude of 6.9. Look in the constellation of Coma Berenices with binoculars or a telescope.
Stargazing Calendar for March 2023
Hello fellow stargazers! This month we only have one small meteor shower, but instead we can look forward to a comet visiting the inner solar system (just barely) and more interestingly two dwarf planets at opposition - Ceres and Makemake.
How NASA’s Dawn Asteroid Mission Works [Infographic]
Recently NASA's Dawn spacecraft achieved orbit around Vesta on July 17. The first photos of the giant asteroid were taken then. The following infographic explains the whole mission of the Dawn spacecraft.
Astronomy Picture of the Week – Vesta from Orbit by Dawn Spacecraft
This photo of Vesta was taken by the Dawn spacecraft from the asteroid's orbit on July 17. Vesta is a large asteroid with a mean diameter of about 530 kilometers. It is the second most massive object in the asteroid belt after Ceres and consists of about 9% of all the belt's mass.