Sign In

Blog

Latest News
Must Watch 2019 Astronomical Events

Must Watch 2019 Astronomical Events

2019 has a lot in store for star gazers around the world. Check out this years must see Astronomical events.

Eclipses

January 6 – Partial Solar Eclipse

A partial solar eclipse occurs when the Moon covers only a portion of the Sun. The partial solar eclipse can only be safely observed with a special solar filter or by looking at the Sun’s reflection.

Visibility: Parts of eastern Asia and the northern Pacific Ocean. Russia will get the best show with with 62% coverage.
(NASA Map and Eclipse Information)

Total lunar eclipse + Super Blood Wolf Moon
January 20 – 21, 2019

During a total lunar eclipse the earth’s shadow will completely cover the moon. In this particular eclipse the moon will be completely cover for an hour and two minutes. The eclipse coincides with one of three super-moons in 2019. This particular super-moon will be a “blood” moon – appearing a reddish tint during the eclipse. The moon will be fully inside the umbra starting at 11:41PM EST.

Visibility: Western parts of Europe, Africa, South and North America.
(NASA Map and Eclipse Information)

July 2 – Total Solar Eclipse

A total solar eclipse occurs when the moon completely blocks the Sun, displaying the Sun’s outer atmosphere known as the corona. Visibility: in parts of the southern pacific Ocean, central Chile, and central Argentina. A partial eclipse will be visible in most parts of the southern Pacific Ocean and western South America. (NASA Map and Eclipse Information)

July 16 – Partial Lunar Eclipse

A partial lunar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes through the Earth’s partial shadow, or penumbra, and only a portion of it passes through the darkest shadow, or umbra. During this type of eclipse a part of the Moon will darken as it moves through the Earth’s shadow.

Visibility: throughout most of Europe, Africa, central Asia, and the Indian Ocean. (NASA Map and Eclipse Information)

December 26 – Annular Solar Eclipse

An annular solar eclipse occurs when the Moon is too far away from the Earth to completely cover the Sun. This results in a ring of light around the darkened Moon. The Sun’s corona is not visible during an annular eclipse.

Visibility: The path of of the eclipse will begin in Saudi Arabia and move east through southern India, northern Sri Lanka, parts of the Indian Ocean, and Indonesia before ending in the Pacific Ocean. A partial eclipse will be visible throughout most of Asia and northern Australia. (NASA Map and Eclipse Information)

The first and only total lunar eclipse of 2019 is a Super Blood Wolf Moon – Sunday January 20, 2019

Super Moons & Celestial Happenings

January 21, February 19, and March 21

A Super Moon is a full or new moon which coincides with the closest distance the moon comes to the Earth in its orbit. This results in an enlarged appearance and the moon can look 15-30% brighter.

January 22 – Conjunction of Venus and Jupiter

A conjunction of Venus and Jupiter will be visible on January 22. The two bright planets will be visible within 2.4 degrees of each other in the early morning sky. Look for this impressive sight in the east just before sunrise.

February 13 – Conjunction of Mars and Uranus

Mars and Uranus will appear extremely close  in the night sky – known as an appulse. This event is also a conjunction, which in astronomy means that the planets share the same right ascension.

November 11 – Mercury transits the sun

During this rare transit, Mercury will move directly between the Earth and the Sun. For five hours and 29 minutes Mercury will be visible crossing the sun. Viewers with telescopes and approved solar filters will be able to observe the dark disk of Mercury moving across the face of the Sun. The next transit of Mercury will not take place until 2039.

Visibility: This transit will be visible throughout all of South America and Central America, and parts of North America, Mexico, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. The best place to view this event in its entirety will be the eastern United States, Central America, and South America. (Transit Visibility Map and Information)

Meteor Showers

January 1 – 5 – Quadrantids Meteor Shower

The Quadrantids is an above average shower, with up to 40 meteors per hour at its peak. It is thought to be produced by dust grains left behind by an extinct comet 2003 EH1, which was discovered in 2003. The shower runs annually from January 1-5. It peaks this year on the night of the 3rd and morning of the 4th. Best viewing will be from a dark location after midnight. Meteors will radiate from the constellation Bootes, but can appear anywhere in the sky.

April 16 – 25 – Lyrids Meteor Shower

The Lyrids is an average shower, producing about 20 meteors per hour at its peak. It is produced by dust particles left behind by comet C/1861 G1 Thatcher, which was discovered in 1861. The shower peaks overnight on the 22nd into the morning of the 23rd. These meteors can sometimes produce bright dust trails that last for several seconds. The waning gibbous moon will block out some of the fainter meteors, but you may catch some bright ones. Best viewing will be from a dark location after midnight. Meteors will radiate from the constellation Lyra, but can appear anywhere in the sky.

April 19 – May 28 – Eta Aquarids Meteor Shower

The Eta Aquarids is an above average shower, capable of producing up to 60 meteors per hour at its peak.  It is produced by dust particles left behind by comet Halley. The shower peaks this year on the night of May 6 and the morning of the May 7.  Most of the activity is seen in the Southern Hemisphere. In the Northern Hemisphere, the rate can reach about 30 meteors per hour.Meteors will radiate from the constellation Aquarius, but can appear anywhere in the sky. Best viewing will be from a dark location after midnight.

July 12 – August 23 – Delta Aquarids Meteor Shower

The Delta Aquarids is an average shower that can produce up to 20 meteors per hour at its peak. It is produced by debris left behind by comets Marsden and Kracht. The shower peaks on the night of July 28 and morning of July 29. The skies should be dark enough for what could be a good show. Best viewing will be from a dark location after midnight. Meteors will radiate from the constellation Aquarius, but can appear anywhere in the sky.

July 17 – August 24 – Perseids Meteor Shower

The Perseids is one of the best meteor showers to observe, producing up to 60 meteors per hour at its peak. The comet Swift-Tuttle, discovered in 1862, pro. The Perseids are famous for producing a large number of bright meteors. The shower runs annually from July 17 to August 24. The shower peaks on the night of August 12 and the morning of August 13. The nearly full moon will block out most of the fainter meteors this year, but the Perseids are known to put on a good show. Best viewing will be from a dark location after midnight. Meteors will radiate from the constellation Perseus, but can appear anywhere in the sky.

October 6 – 10 – Draconids Meteor Shower

The Draconids is a minor meteor shower producing only about 10 meteors per hour. It is produced by dust grains left behind by comet 21P Giacobini-Zinner, which was first discovered in 1900. The Draconids is an unusual shower in that the best viewing is in the early evening. The shower peaks on the the night of the 8th. Expect dark skies this year for observing. Meteors will radiate from the constellation Draco, but can appear anywhere in the sky.

October 2 – November 7 – Orionids Meteor Shower

The Orionids is an average shower producing up to 20 meteors per hour at its peak. It is produced by dust grains left behind by comet Halley, which has been observed since ancient times. The shower peaks on the night of October 21 and the morning of October 22. The Orionids tend to be fairly bright, but the second quarter moon will block some of the fainter meteors this year. Meteors will radiate from the constellation Orion, but can appear anywhere in the sky.

September 7 – December 10  – Taurids Meteor Shower

The Taurids is a long-running minor meteor shower producing only about 5-10 meteors per hour. It is unusual in that it consists of two separate streams. Dust grains left behind by Asteroid 2004 TG10 produce the first steam. Debris left behind by Comet 2P Encke produce the second stream. The shower peaks on the the night of November 5.  Meteors will radiate from the constellation Taurus, but can appear anywhere in the sky.

November 6 – 30 – Leonids Meteor Shower

The Leonids is an average shower, producing up to 15 meteors per hour at its peak. This shower is unique in that it has a cyclonic peak about every 33 years where hundreds of meteors per hour can be seen. That last of these occurred in 2001. The Leonids is produced by dust grains left behind by comet Tempel-Tuttle, which was discovered in 1865. The shower peaks on the night of the 17th and morning of the 18th. The second quarter moon will block fainter meteors.  Best viewing will be from a dark location after midnight. Meteors will radiate from the constellation Leo, but can appear anywhere in the sky.

Geminid meteor shower 12-16 December

Considered my many to be the best, the Geminids is capable of producing up to 120 multicolored meteors per hour at its peak. It is produced by debris left behind by an asteroid known as 3200 Phaethon, which was discovered in 1982. The shower runs annually from December 7-17, peaking this year on the night of the 13th and morning of the 14th. This year, a full moon will block out many of the meteors, but the Geminids may still put on a beautiful show in dark skies. Best viewing will be from a dark location after midnight. Meteors will radiate from the constellation Gemini, but can appear anywhere in the sky.

Related Posts

Leave a Reply