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Panorama from the End of the World

By: Babak A. Tafreshi

 

Region: Africa

Site: Hoggar Mountains - Algeria

Date: 2009 May 29

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The Milky Way fades in the morning light as seen from the Assekrem Mountain in central African Sahara or southern Algeria near to tropic of Cancer. Click on the black star-lines icon above the image to recognize the planets and constellation figures. The Assekrem peak, as the main proposed site for Algerian National Observatory, is one of the highest in Hoggar Mountains with an exceptional overview to many giant volcanic cliffs which raised from the desert. Assekrem, means "the End of the World" in the old Saharan Taureg language, is known as one of the most scenic area of Sahara but it is also famous as the point where the priest le Père de Foucauld lived in the summer of 1905 and there are still several European priests who are living here in the middle of Sahara. Notable in the sky of this early morning panorama: At left planets Mars and Venus meets in constellation Pisces above the raising morning light. Continue the line of Mars and Venus upward and you will find the dazzling Jupiter high in the sky above south. The line simply shows the ecliptic or plane of the Solar System as seen in our sky. Look below Jupiter to find bright star Fomalhaut or the Alpha (brightest) star of Piscis Austrinus. To its below left is the southern constellations Grus. Pan more to the right to see the orange light glow toward south west from the oasis town of Tamanrasset some 80km away. More to the right is the central budge of the Milky Way in the constellations Scorpius and Sagittarius while setting in the west.

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