Diary of Astronomical Phenomena for March

Diary of Astronomical Phenomena for March 2017
For the star map click here
For the Star Gazing in March  click here

March is the month of Vernal equinox.
It is often said that on this day the day and night are of equal duration. But that is not so.
Check this link.

Venus’ appearance above the western horizon for this season will be over in March 2017.  It will be in inferior conjunction, i.e. between the Sun and the Earth on 25th of March. As the planet is coming towards us, it’s angular size is increasing. On 1st Venus will be 46.7″ and by about mid March it will increase by about 10 arch seconds. On 15th it will be 56.7″.

Venus march2017.jpg


Movement of the Planets in constellations

Mercury – moves from Aquarius to  Pisces on 11th and remains there for the rest of the month except for couple of hours when it passes through Cetus on 17th. Note Cetus is not a zodiacal constellation.  Superior conjunction of Mercury takes place on 7th. If we could see the planet then we would find it just within 1° 40′ of the Sun but on the farther side.

Venus – is in  Pisces all through this month.  Again just for couple of hours it enters the boundary of Pegasus on 29th of March.  Inferior conjunction of Venus takes place on 25th of March. It will be about 8° 17′ from the sun.

Mars – is in Pisces too and moves to Aries on 8th and remains there for the rest of the month.

Jupiter – is in Virgo this month

Saturn – is in Sagittarius this month


Phases of the Moon (timings in IST hh:mm)
First quarter: 05-Mar-2017 17:02
Full moon:      12-Mar-2017 20:24
Last quarter:  20-Mar-2017  21:28
New moon:     28-Mar-2017 08:27

 d   h (in IST)
02    00:28	Moon-Mars: 4.4° N
03    12:54	Moon Perigee: 369100 km
05    08:08	Moon-Aldebaran: 0.2° S
05    17:02	First Quarter
07    05:38	Mercury Superior Conj.
07    06:13	Moon North Dec.: 18.9° N
09    12:42	Moon-Beehive: 4.1° N
11    03:50	Moon-Regulus: 0.9° N
11    09:47	Moon Ascending Node
12    20:24	Full Moon
15    01:34	Moon-Jupiter: 2.7° S
18    22:55	Moon Apogee: 404700 km
20    15:59	Vernal Equinox
20    16:19	Moon-Saturn: 3.8° S
20    21:28	Last Quarter
21    10:52	Moon South Dec.: 18.9° S
25    16:01	Venus Inferior Conj.
25    21:11	Moon Descending Node
28    08:27	New Moon
30    18:09	Moon Perigee: 363900 km


About skytonight

I am the present Director of Nehru Planetarium of Nehru Centre Mumbai, India I like to talk about astronomy and sky observations to general public.
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