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The Urban Astronomer

Saturn Arrives / Mars Reverses Course

5 May 2014, 05:58 UTC
Saturn Arrives / Mars Reverses Course
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Mars in RetrogradeIt's a good time to enjoy planets, as Mercury, Jupiter, Mars and Saturn all occupy the May skies. Saturn reaches opposition on May 10, rising as the Sun sets and remaining visible all night next to the bright pair of stars that top the scales of Libra.Mars has been in retrograde motion (reverse motion) across the constellation Virgo during April and in early May reaches the end of retrograde and returns to prograde motion, moving back toward the bright star Spica. It's interesting that Mars was near Spica during April's 'Blood Moon' eclipse and in the course of a few weeks moved rapidly westward toward the star Porrima. Now that it has completed its retrograde sweep it returns to Spica in July and continues eastward toward a conjunction with Saturn in Libra in August.Image courtesy Sky Safari.

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