On a fine warm summer's night, it's wonderful to go out and watch the sky. Considering Melbourne's huge size and the amount of light pollution that we have, we are fortunate to still be able to see most constellations of the Southern sky and track the position of the planets. I did a rather brave thing, shooting for the stars on my camera without a tripod, but I think the results are quite good, considering.
The first image is the planet Venus setting in the Western sky. This is the brightest object in the night sky after the moon. It is said that if one is in a place without any light pollution and it is a moonless night, the planet Venus is bright enough to cause your shadow to be cast behind you.
The second image is the constellation Orion (the three stars in a row are his belt) and to the right, the brightest star in the night sky, which is Sirius, in the constellation of Canis Major. To help with identification, I have appended screen shots from an excellent application called "Stellarium" that helps the skywatcher identify astronomical features.
The last image is our very own Southern Hemisphere constellation, the Southern Cross (Crux). The pointers are the two bright stars to the bottom right and they belong to the constellation Centaurus., being the named stars Hadar and Rigil Kent. They point to the South.
This post is part of the Skywatch Friday meme