Skywatch: Annual Perseid meteor showering and another supermoon
August 2, 2014 - Supermoon
With a span of planets in a dusk and morning heavens, pale Perseid meteors and a fun full moon, these idle days of summer underline a bustling night sky.
The play opens Sunday night with Saturn and Mars flanking a immature moon in a southwestern heavens. Reddish Mars (zero magnitude, manifest from a city) hangs to a right, and a ringed Saturn (zero magnitude, manifest from a city) loiters to a left.
Because a moon ceaselessly inches by a heavens, it will pass over Saturn — that will be seen in other tools of a creation — on Monday morning. You won’t see this from Washington, though we can locate it live online during Slooh.com. The online astronomy organisation dubbed this “The Moon ‘Photobombing’ Saturn from Australia.” See it during 7 a.m. Monday during live.slooh.com.
On Monday night in Washington, a moon starts to stretch itself from Mars and Saturn. The red and ringed planets form a parsimonious partnership by Aug. 27 and are within a few degrees of any other. The moon earnings Aug. 31 to form another contingent with Mars and Saturn.
In a center of August, really low on a eastern setting see Venus (-3.0 magnitude, really bright) rise a morning sky. Jupiter (-1.0 magnitude, bright) starts to emerge in a same closeness about 6 a.m. in morning twilight. On successive mornings, these heavenly paramours seem to ride toward any other, though on Aug. 18, Venus and Jupiter conjunct. Like teen sweethearts holding hands, they sojourn tighten for several days until a lunar chaperone — a moon — breaks them detached on Aug. 23.
The moon becomes full Aug. 10, during 2:09 p.m. Eastern time, after it reaches perigee (the moon’s closest stretch to Earth in this cycle) mins earlier, according to a U.S. Naval Observatory’s Astronomical Phenomenon 2014. It’s colloquially dubbed a “supermoon,” and it is a second of 3 vast and splendid full moons this summer.
The radiant moon will expected rinse out many of this year’s routinely strong Perseid meteor shower, that peaks Aug. 12-13, according to a International Meteor Organization. (The rise might occur after midnight on Aug. 13.) Bill Cooke, NASA meteor expert, says a Perseids customarily peep a few some-more fireballs than other vast showers.
On a nights heading adult to a meteor showering (before a Aug. 10 full moon) and on a nights after a lunar change fades, we might see a few wandering meteors.
●Tuesday: “A Journey Among Galaxies: From Nearby to Far Away,” a speak by astronomer Sebastien Heinis during a University of Maryland Observatory in College Park. Telescope observation afterward, continue permitting. 9 p.m. www.astro.umd.edu/openhouse.
●Aug. 10: Sean McWilliams, partner highbrow of astronomy during West Virginia University, hangs 10 to explain sobriety waves, during a Northern Virginia Astronomy Club. Room 163, Research Hall, George Mason University, Fairfax. 7 p.m. www.novac.com.
●Aug. 20: “Astronomy from 40,000 Feet: Observing with NASA’s SOFIA,” a harangue about study astronomy around aircraft by researcher Tracy Huard during a University of Maryland Observatory in College Park. Afterward, gawk during a heavens by telescopes. 9 p.m. www.astro.umd.edu/openhouse.
●Aug. 22-26: Registration space is stuffing quick for a Almost Heaven Star Party during a Mountain Institute in Spruce Knob, W.Va., hosted by a Northern Virginia Astronomy Club. Join associate inlet aficionados who suffer stars, planets, birds and uninformed air. www.ahsp.org.
●Aug. 23: Late summer’s dim heavens wait as Sean O’Brien of a National Air and Space Museum and internal astronomers beam we by stars and planets during Sky Meadows State Park nearby Paris, Va. Parking is $5. Arrive before dark. 7:30-10:30 p.m. Park phone: 540-592-3556. airandspace.si.edu.
●Aug. 23: Live from Rock Creek Park, it’s “Exploring a Sky,” hosted by a National Park Service and a National Capital Astronomers. Meet nearby a Nature Center in a margin south of Military and Glover roads NW. 8:30 p.m. capitalastronomers.org.
Blaine Friedlander can be reached during firstname.lastname@example.org.