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Does The Moon ever happen to pass in front of DSOs?

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#1 Buqibu

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 11:21 AM

For example, is it possible for it to occult The Orion Nebula or The Andromeda Galaxy etc? I've never seen any image of this so I'm curious! Sorry if this is a very stupid question😅

#2 Jim Davis

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 11:36 AM

Yes, but it would really be hard to image. The Moonlight drowns out anything else.

 

Here is a thread on relative sizes: https://www.cloudyni...mparison-image/


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#3 Boven

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 11:38 AM

The moon does pass in front of a few DSOs, but since it's so bright it outshines anything around it. It's like looking at your headlights of your car and trying to see/take a photo of an ant that is beside the light.

This effect is diminished when the moon is very young (and therefore still faint).

 

Also if passes near the planets or bright stars it is called conjunction and it's fun to see.


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#4 ShaulaB

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 11:39 AM

The Moon occults the Pleiades fairly often.

Look at your sky map or planetarium app. Find, or in your settings, bring up a line for the ecliptic. You will see that M42 is not near the ecliptic.
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#5 Dwight J

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 11:44 AM

The moon travels along the ecliptic, the path that the sun and planets follow.  I can occult objects along that path like M45 as already stated and M44 the Beehive.  It’s light would drown out fainter objects.  It does occult planets from time to time.


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#6 Mark Strollo

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 11:46 AM

Also keep in mind that the moon (and the planets) follow the line of the ecliptic.

The Andromeda Galaxy and the Orion Nebula are not near this line.

Lots can be done with Photoshop to generate pretty combinations, though.


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#7 TOMDEY

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 11:46 AM

Yes indeed! As long as their declinations are within the extremes of the moon's trajectory... they will eventually be eclipsed by Luna. This also provides the opportunity to tease apart otherwise unresolvable phenomena just by doing radiometry on a targeted region of the cosmos. The beauty in that is it applies across almost all of the electromagnetic spectrum and some particulates as well.    Tom


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#8 Tapio

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 11:47 AM

The inclination angle of the Moon’s orbit to the plane of the ecliptic is 5 degrees.

So it's never far from ecliptic (cannot occult Andromeda galaxy for example).



#9 happylimpet

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 11:51 AM

It occults the crab nebula periodically. This is very useful for calibrating x-ray telescopes.


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#10 Cotts

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 11:59 AM

The moon's orbit is tilted 5º relative to the ecliptic.   So any object within 5º of the ecliptic.... 

 

<Fires up Sky Safari>

 

A quick list of Messiers and other brighter DSO's that the moon might occult:

 

M45, Hyades, M35, Eskimo Nebula, M44 Beehive, M95, M96, M4, M80, Rho Oph Nebulosity, M19, M20 Trifid, M8 Lagoon, M28, M22, M75. 

 

Good luck viewing or imaging these...

 

Dave


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#11 spereira

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 12:17 PM

Moving to Solar System Observing.

 

smp



#12 havasman

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 12:46 PM

The moon recently occulted M35. It was difficult to see as the cluster was washed out by the moonlight.


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#13 Astrojensen

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 12:48 PM

The moon's orbit is tilted 5º relative to the ecliptic.   So any object within 5º of the ecliptic.... 

 

<Fires up Sky Safari>

 

A quick list of Messiers and other brighter DSO's that the moon might occult:

 

M45, Hyades, M35, Eskimo Nebula, M44 Beehive, M95, M96, M4, M80, Rho Oph Nebulosity, M19, M20 Trifid, M8 Lagoon, M28, M22, M75. 

 

Good luck viewing or imaging these...

 

Dave

It can also occult the entire M105 galaxy trio - and actually did so today from my location! It was 1.10 P.M., though, and just a few degrees above the horizon, so quite impossible to see. 

 

An occultation of NGC 2392 (Eskimo) shouldn't be impossible to see on a clear spring evening, if the waxing crescent Moon isn't too old and bright. It should be quite doable in a mid- to large aperture telescope and should be fun to see. Now I need to keep an eye out for it. It's certainly not something many have seen.

 

 

Clear skies!

Thomas, Denmark



#14 Buqibu

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 02:34 PM

Thank you all for the replies! Yes I agree my examples were quite off, I wasn't considering the ecliptic

#15 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 04:03 PM

Here's a screen capture (click to enlarge) showing the Moon and M35 at 1:00 a.m. EDT on May 15th.

Attached Thumbnails

  • Moon and M35 5-15-21 Starry Night.JPG

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#16 Jim Davis

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 04:37 PM

You can get images during a total lunar eclipse.

 

Here is a really good one: https://scontent.fab...764&oe=60CDC08A


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#17 jdupton

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 04:52 PM

ShaulaB and Buqibu,

 

The Moon occults the Pleiades fairly often.

Look at your sky map or planetarium app. Find, or in your settings, bring up a line for the ecliptic. You will see that M42 is not near the ecliptic.

   This was an opportune example with perfect timing.

 

   The sun passed only 4° south of the Pleiades this very day.

 

   Of course, we cannot observe these events due to the brightness of the moon and sun. (If you think the moon is bright making observing the event difficult, consider the sun!) However, had there been a total solar eclipse today and you were on the center-line, you might have been able to photograph the close passing with the Pleiades just north of the eclipsed sun.

 

 

John



#18 Napp

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 05:14 PM

You can observe the moon occulting the brighter stars of the Pleiades and the Beehive fairly easily when disappearing on the dark side of the moon or reappearing on the dark side.  Sunday night I watched an occultation of Kappa Geminorum.  Through my 25X100 binoculars I could see several much fainter stars around Kappa Gemnorum that would be occulted.  However as the moon approached they became lost in the glare.  And this was with the dark side of the crescent.  I watched Kappa Geminorum emerge from the bright area of the crescent but of course not the dim stars.  I have seen a very faint star occulted during a total lunar eclipse through a telescope.  That was special.  And also lucky.  I was doing outreach with one of my clubs and just happened to check my scope’s tracking and focus at the time the occultation occurred.


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#19 ShaulaB

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 06:45 PM

The Moon goes through phases. When it is a skinny crescent, occultations of another object become interesting. The darkened part of the Moon can block the light of an object too.
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#20 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 07:57 PM

The Moon can also occult the open cluster M67 in Cancer.

 

http://www.astronomy...1205/24m67moon/



#21 timokarhula

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Posted 21 May 2021 - 02:47 AM

An occultation of NGC 2392 (Eskimo) shouldn't be impossible to see on a clear spring evening, if the waxing crescent Moon isn't too old and bright. It should be quite doable in a mid- to large aperture telescope and should be fun to see. Now I need to keep an eye out for it. It's certainly not something many have seen.

The Eskimo nebula was occulted during the total lunar eclipse on January 9, 1982.  With my Celestron-8 SCT, I followed the Moon closing in on NGC2392 but the totality ended just before the Moon covered the Eskimo!  I lost the nebula due to the sunlit moon limb, but had the totality lasted a few minutes longer or I had been further west, I would have seen this rare occultation.

 

/Timo Karhula


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#22 Rutilus

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Posted 21 May 2021 - 03:40 AM

Lunar occultation of double stars are nice to observe. Here is drawing I made of 

the occultation of eta Geminorum with my achromat refractor. Disappearance was on the dark limb,

followed by a bright limb reappearance.

Attached Thumbnails

  • eta-Gem-occultation-cn.jpg

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#23 chrysalis

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Posted 21 May 2021 - 04:53 AM

Here are a couple of photographs from 1969 or 1970 (I **think**) that I took when I was 14 or 15 years old of the Moon occulting the Pleiades.

 

Click to enlarge.

 

moon-pleiades-14yo.JPG


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#24 chrysalis

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Posted 21 May 2021 - 10:00 AM

I think 2023 starts the next series of occultations of the Pleiades by the Moon. 

 

",,,occultation series of the star Alcyone will start on September 5, 2023, and end on July 7, 2029, for a total of 79 occultations."


Edited by chrysalis, 21 May 2021 - 10:05 AM.

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#25 Alvan Clark

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Posted 22 May 2021 - 01:05 PM

M9 is an occasional occultee.


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