Lunar halo over the New Forest Observatory Monday 2nd January 2012 7:20 p.m.

I was imaging the Double Cluster in Perseus when a large halo formed around the Moon.  Apparently these halos are due to light reflection off oriented ice crystals in high Cirrus clouds.  It is meant to preceed a storm, and certainly a huge bank of cloud soon came along – no storm yet, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it started pouring with rain soon.

The bright object next to the Moon at the 7 O’clock position is Jupiter.  Just outside the halo at 10:30 are the Pleiades, and a little further out at 9:30 is Aldebaran and the Hyades.  Over to the left (East) just rising above the trees is the familiar Winter constellation of Orion.  Bottom left hand corner is the North dome, and a little further to the right is the top of the South dome.


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