What’s Up in August: Another super moon, and a annual meteor shower

July 27, 2015 - Supermoon

We are median by summer now and this month promises dual tighten heavenly conjunctions, an asteroid occultation for prejudiced of a country, a closest and biggest full moon of a year in a center of 3 super moons this summer, and a annual Perseid meteor shower. So get outward as mostly as we can and demeanour adult to be desirous by a wonders of a ever-changing solar system. The nights are solemnly removing longer to give we some-more time to suffer and know these stately motions always going on around us.

Mars has solemnly been shutting a opening on Saturn via a summer. As this month starts, they are 13 degrees apart. A fist reason adult during arm’s length covers 10 degrees of a sky. Notice that a star Spica is about a same stretch to a right of Mars as Saturn is to a left, in a scarcely true line.

SKY GUIDE: This draft represents a sky as it appears over Maine during August. The stars are shown as they seem during 10:30 p.m. early in a month, during 9:30 p.m. during midmonth and during 8:30 p.m. during month’s end. Saturn is shown in a midmonth position. To use a map, reason it plumb and spin it so a instruction we are confronting is during a bottom.


The waxing crescent moon will deposit by all 3 astronomical objects during a initial 4 days of a month. It is relocating east during a rate of half a grade per hour. Notice that Mars starts out a small brighter than Saturn, though as it catches adult with a ringed universe during a rate of half a grade per day, it also gets a small fainter. By a time a red universe catches adult on a 23rd, it is a same liughtness as Saturn, that is 0.6 magnitude. Both planets are behind in their prograde (eastward) suit given they are good past opposition.

The other good heavenly and maturation this month is between Venus and Jupiter, a dual brightest planets. They will be reduction than a half grade apart, that is a breadth of a full moon, 45 mins before morning on a 18th. Notice that Venus is dual magnitudes, or about 6 times brighter than Jupiter. After that a aristocrat of a planets will arise aloft in a sky even as Venus sinks a small lower. Watch them again during a mornings of a 21st by a 23rd as a slim loss crescent moon approaches a span of planets as it sinks reduce by a winter hexagon.

On a dusk of a 19th, a gloomy asteroid named 232 Russia will mystic a gloomy star in Libra for 2 to 3 seconds. It will customarily be manifest over a slight route from North Dakota opposite Pennsylvania and into southern New Jersey. These can be really engaging and educational events if we can set adult some cameras along a edges of a lane and get a really minute design of a accurate figure of a asteroid as it quickly covers adult a star.

The closest full moon of a year will start during 2:09 p.m. on a 10th. It will be within 25 mins of perigee during that time. That creates it a closest of a 3 uninterrupted super moons that we will have this summer. The Jul and Sep ones start within one day of a perigee, that qualifies it to be called a super moon. That customarily happens once about each 13 months on average, though this summer we get to see 3 in a row.

A super moon is adult to 30 percent brighter and 14 percent incomparable than a full moon during apogee, when it is farthest from Earth. The moon is about 222,000 miles divided during perigee and 252,000 miles divided during apogee. Even that many of a disproportion could be tough to heed and a moon would never go from being really tighten to perigee one month to being really tighten to round a subsequent month. The full moon always looks many incomparable when it is initial rising over a setting given of an visual outcome called a moon illusion.

Another good proceed to demeanour during it is to design a moon about 28 earth diameters divided during perigee during a super moons and about 31 earth diameters divided during apogee, when a full moon appears during a smallest, also called a micro moon. That might still seem distant away, though it is customarily 1.2 seconds during a speed of light.

The subsequent sum lunar obscure will start Oct. 8. It will be manifest for us on a East Coast when a full moon sets, that will be toward sunrise. That will be a second in a array of 4 sum lunar eclipses in a quarrel with no prejudiced ones in between, that is called a tetrad. That is intensely singular and has customarily happened 7 times in a final 2,000 years.

The Perseid meteor showering will arise on Tuesday night a 12th into Wednesday morning. Unfortunately that will start customarily dual days past a full moon. That means a loss gibbous moon will arise about dual hours after sunset, soaking out a best prejudiced of a shower, that customarily occurs after midnight toward a morning as a earth is spinning into a meteor showering instead of divided from it.

However, we can deliver some of this year’s showering by being wakeful that any meteors that emanate from a eager while that indicate is still low on a setting will turn earth grazers, and leave a prolonged and fantastic route by a atmosphere. There might customarily be one or dual of these before a moon rises, though they will turn unforgettable, blazing their proceed into your memory even as they bake their proceed by a atmosphere.

Instead of a separate second for a normal meteor tighten to a radiant, an earth grazer could final adult to 15 seconds and even change tone several times as it plunges deeper into a atmosphere. On Aug. 10, 1973, a shining earth grazer was even manifest in a daytime as it skipped off a atmosphere over Jackson Lake in a Grand Tetons in Wyoming.

You can start looking for early Perseids as shortly as a month starts and good before a full moon. Next year, a arise of a Perseids will be ideal, with no moon to meddle with any prejudiced of one of nature’s good shows.

Caused by Comet Swift-Tuttle, that orbits a object each 133 years, a Perseids customarily furnish about 60 to 100 meteors per hour if a sky is transparent and not cleared out by a moonlight. Smashing into a atmosphere during around 40 miles per second, many of these silt grain-sized pieces of comet dirt bake adult around 70 miles high in reduction than one second. Look toward a Northeastern sky for Perseus, that will arise around 9 p.m. on a 12th. Try to locate some fantastic earth grazers before that time.


Aug. 2: The moon will be manifest between Spica and Mars one hour after sunset.

Aug. 3: First entertain moon is during 8:50 p.m. The moon will pass between Mars and Saturn, and will mystic Saturn over Australia. In 2004, a Messenger Spacecraft was launched to Mercury and has given suggested several of a secrets.

Aug. 4: The Phoenix Mars lander was launched in 2007.

Aug. 6: In 2012, a Mars scholarship lab rover, Curiosity, safely landed. It has done many sparkling discoveries and has taken some good pictures.

Aug. 10: In 1990, Magellan entered circuit around Venus. Full moon is during 2:09 p.m. This is called a Sturgeon or Green Corn Moon. This super moon will be a largest full moon of a year, function customarily 25 mins before a perigee.

Aug. 12: In 1877, Asaph Hall detected Deimos, a smaller of a dual moons of Mars, that are substantially prisoner asteroids. If we could travel around on Phobos or Deimos, a dual moons of Mars, we would customarily import a few ounces and we could burst out of a 1,000-foot low void and chuck a ball into orbit. The Perseid meteor showering peaks tonight.

Aug. 17: Last entertain moon is during 8:26 a.m.

Aug. 18: Venus and Jupiter will be reduction than a half grade detached low in a eastern morning sky, 45 mins before sunrise. This is their closest proceed in 14 years. Try to get come cinema of a span of planets.

Aug. 22: In 1963, a X-15 jet set a universe record of 354,000 feet, or 67 miles high, that is about where many of a meteors bake adult in a atmosphere.

Aug. 25: New moon is during 10:13 a.m.

Aug. 31: Saturn and Mars will be tighten to a moon one hour after sunset.

Bernie Reim of Wells is co-director of a Astronomical Society of Northern New England.





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