Episode 297 – Objects to Observe in February 2023 Show Notes

In this episode we’ll talk about the Zodiacal light, Venus and Neptune in the same field of view, the Moon pairing up with Venus & Jupiter then the Moon before it gets so close to Mars in your telescope. Oh and just to let those listening on the 365 Days of Astronomy you can catch all 8 Actual Astronomy Podcasts by subscribing in Apple Podcasts, Spotify or any podcatching app. Show notes for this episode will be available on our website http://www.actualastronomy.com

  • February 3rd – Castor, Pollux and Moon line up
  • Full Moon February 5th
  • Zodiacal light is visible in the Western sky once the Moon is out of the way near mid-month.
  • What is the Zodiacal light?
  • What does it Look like?
  • How can one see it.
  • February 13 – Last quarter Moon
  • February 15th – Venus and Neptune in conjunction and the same telescopic field!
  • Now you will need a telescope to see it.

-February 20th  – new Moon

– February 21st, evening sky – Moon, Venus and Jupiter

  • Feb 22 Jupiter & Moon in same low power eyepiece & Occultation in S. S America
  • Feb. 26 – Pleiades / Moon & Hyades
  • Feb 27 – First quarter Moon
  • Feb 27th – Mars & the Moon very close – look for the phase. 
  • Feb 28th – Lunar Straight wall visible this evening


  • Comet ZTF E3 will be slowly fading but the Moon interferes until the end of the month when it may be 8th magnitude.
  • However, Comet K2 Panstarrs might be 6th magnitude…but you’ll have to head south! 

Orion is our shallow dive this month.

  • Orion passes through the median in the early evening hours
  • Oldest depiction of Orion’s hourglass figure is an ivory carving found in Germany and it is as old as 38,000 years ago.
  • Known to the babylonians as the Heavenly Sheppard
  • In Greek mythology Orion was a supernatural hunter, and boastful to, so dispatched by a Scorpion sent to kill him…both would be placed in the sky but opposite one another so they wouldn’t quarrel.
  • Orion is the central winter constellation whose stars guide us around the entire sky this time of year.
  • To those of us who observe Orion it is home to Messier 42, the Great Orion Nebula. A star forming Region almost 2000 light years away but visible to the unaided eye as a fuzzy spot in the sword of Orion.
  • How do we find the sword?
  • What does M42 look like in binoculars…vertical star clusters with a  fuzzy one. That’s M42.
  • Double star in Orion – Rigel bottom right foot.

One thought on “Episode 297 – Objects to Observe in February 2023 Show Notes

  1. Hello to Chris and Shane: I just finished listening to episode 297. I am just starting my journey into observing the night sky. Your verbal guidance accompanied by the Episode notes is truly valuable to me. I appreciate you putting these two together. This gives me the strong guide to how to get started. THANK YOU. Two of your recent podcasts have provided me with about 11 to 12 objects to try and observe. A few weeks back I was able to observe the ISS station as it moved across the sky in 5 minutes, and Mars just few degrees from the moon. Again, thanks and please continue. Bruce Folkersen.


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