This is last night’s occultation of Mars by the moon. This was the best picture I got, taken two minutes after Mars came out from behind the moon. I added the gray circle to show where the disk of the moon would be if you could see it.

I had a better picture in mind for you, but I was sadly defeated by a big ol’ fog bank that covered the entire sky within 50 miles of my house. I went home with my tail between my legs, but by 4:29 am, when the occultation ended, there was a break in the clouds and I could see the moon from my backyard. There was still a slight haze, but both moon and Mars ended up tolerably sharp anyway.

Note that this is a composite photo. The moon required a very different exposure than Mars, so I took two identical pictures with different exposures and then stitched them together.

February 18, 2020 — Irvine, California

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