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Moon Occults Pleiades - North America - Feb 03

Started by curtrenz, 01/27/2009 11:10PM
Posted 01/27/2009 11:10PM Opening Post
The 63% illuminated waxing gibbous Moon will occult stars of the Pleiades cluster (M45) during the evening of 2009 FEB 03. Immersions will occur on the dark limb and emersions on the bright limb. Observers located on a star’s graze path will be able to see it winking on and off as lunar hills and valleys pass by. Folks between a star’s two graze paths will witness a full occultation. Note that many of the northern graze paths are in space above the North Pole.

Observers in the southeastern US are too far south to see any of the six brightest Pleiades stars being occulted. In that group only Maia and Taygete will be occulted for anyone in the contiguous US. For us Chicagoans it will be only Taygete. Maia will be grazed for folks near San Francisco, Toronto and Boston. Any Eskimos in the far northern islands of Canada will see all six occulted. However, there are lesser lights within the cluster whose occultations will be visible to almost all North Americans, weather permitting.

I’ve created a graze map for North Americans and a preview graphic for Chicagoans. They can be seen at

Photos and descriptions of the event would be welcome additions to this thread.

For astronomical graphics, including
monthly wallpaper calendar, visit:

Curt Renz