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Manchester Astronomical Society
Established 1903

Manastro Journal for January

In the Sky for the next few weeks (images taken at 10pm on 15th january)









The Moon

New Moon on 21st

1st Quarter on the 28th

Full Moon on 6th

3rd Quarter on the 15th

On the 6th, the full moon will be a 'Mico Moon'- when the Full Moon or New Moon occurs near the Moon's furthest distance from Earth, its apogee, it is often called a Micromoon.

On the 21st, the new moon will be a 'Super new Moon'- when the Full Moon or New Moon occurs near the Moon's closest approach to Earth, its perigee, it is often called a Supermoon.

Planet of the month: Mars (again)

Diameter: 6792 km 0.5325 Earths
Mass: 0.1074 Earths
Density: 3.93 g/cc (water=1)
Gravity: 0.379 G
Rotation Period: 1.03 days 1d 00h 37m 23s


© Stephen Faulder

Mars is still the outstanding planet of the month in January, still very large in the night sky throughout January, although opposition was on the 8th Dec. During January, Mars, currently in Taurus, enters 'Retrograde' motion, where the planet appears to hit the brakes and go in the reverse direction to it's previous motion - heading east. The current angle (side on view) of the planet should allow for a fine view of both polar regions.

Constellation of the Month:  Gemini (shown 15th January 22:00)


Gemini constellation is located in the northern celestial hemisphere. Its name means “the twins” in Latin. The constellation represents the twins Castor and Pollux (Polydeuces), also known as the Dioscuri in ancient times, in Greek mythology.

Gemini is known mainly for its two bright stars, Castor and Pollux, the neutron star Geminga, and several deep sky objects, among them the open cluster Messier 35, the Eskimo Nebula, the Jellyfish Nebula, and the Medusa Nebula.

Gemini is the 30th largest constellation in the sky, occupying an area of 514 square degrees. It lies in the second quadrant of the northern hemisphere (NQ2) and can be seen at latitudes between +90° and -60°. The neighbouring constellations are Auriga, Cancer, Canis Minor, Lynx, Monoceros, Orion and Taurus.


© Phil Swift

Meteor Showers this month

Peak 3-4th - Quadrantids (ZHR 110)

MAS Society & MAS Facebook members' recent images

Here is a selection of some of the recent images from our members, there are many more excelent pictures on our Facebook page & in the images section of this website; check them out.

Jellyfish Nebula

Jellyfish Nebula © Alan Griffiths - 17/12/22


Mars © Mark Forbes - 11/12/22

Orion Nebula

Orion Nebula © Rikesh Patel-17/12/22


Jupiter © Martyn Jones-22/12/22


Mars Occultation © Kevin Kilburn-08/12/22




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