Moon / Aldebaran Occultation 2017 August 16

On the morning of August 16 the crescent Moon – 1 day past last quarter – has a busy time occulting stars in Taurus. Around 03:30UT it lies in the Hyades, the V-shaped cluster that traditionally forms the face of the bull, occulting stars as it moves eastwards in relation to the background sky. After sunrise (sunrise is at 04:48UT from London) it moves on to occult Aldebaran (alpha Tauri) the brightest star in the constellation and the star that forms the eye of the bull. This occultation takes place with the Moon lying almost due south and at an altitude of around 54 degrees (from London) so hopefully there will be no problems with trees or tall buildings.

The occultation takes place on the bright limb of the Moon around 06:40UT from London and around 06:45UT from Glasgow. Remember to add 1 hour to these times for BST. From the north of Scotland there will be a grazing occultation – see the 2017 BAA Handbook, pages 40 and 41.

The chart below shows the position of the Moon and Aldebaran at 06:30UT from London.

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