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Concordiae’s small bay is roughly the size of Pedro Bank in Jamaica. Like its earthly counterpart, it may have mountain peaks that are just barely covered—but by lava flow, not seawater. Be sure to list your evening’s observations in your lunar notes. We’ll return here for more! ‘‘Everything has a natural explanation. 30. The Crisium Region (credit—Greg Konkel). 40 The Night Sky Companion Saturday, January 31 What a busy date in astronomy history! In 1958 the United States. launched its first satellite— Explorer 1—which discovered the bands of radiation now referred to as the Van Allen Belts .

William Ferrel (historical image). January, 2009 39 Friday, January 30 Tonight’s early evening Moon is high enough to warrant study. During the last lunar cycle, we reviewed maria large enough to be seen unaided, but many more can be revealed telescopically. Magnify the Crisium region and let’s look around. Along the eastern side near the lunar limb is Mare Marginis, whose position between the nearside and farside will never allow us to see more than a thin gray line. Thanks to the lunar orbiters, we know it has an irregular border and shallow lava fill, which lead scientists to believe Marginus wasn’t created from an impact.

Illuminating the gases is its fueling source, the multiple star 42 Orionis—a prized double on many lists. Through a telescope, this lovely triangle of bright nebulae and its several enshrouded stars make a wonderful region for exploration. Can you see the Running Man within? 18a. NGC 1662 (credit—Palomar Observatory, courtesy of Caltech). 18b. NGC 1977 (credit—Palomar Observatory, courtesy of Caltech). 28 The Night Sky Companion Monday, January 19 Somewhere out there before dawn in the year 1779, Charles Messier was still awake at the eyepiece discovering M56!

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