Celestial Spectacles To Enjoy This January

If your New Year resolution was to take up astronomy, or your Christmas present consisted of a brand new telescope, here’s what you can expect to see in January.

Image result for astronomy

Also Check: 2017 is the year of Tesla

January 4th: The Quadrantid Meteor Shower

January in astronomy kicks off with the Quadrantid meteor shower today, 4th January. Those in the US will likely get the best views at it peaks between 19:00-21:00. Those in the UK might not see a great deal as it will be early afternoon. Astronomers located close to the Mississippi River will have the best views and can expect to see between 60 and 120 meteors per hour during the peak period.

Magnesium burning up on entry to the Earth atmosphere should show as a blue streak in the sky and you should see the effects for a few hours either side of the peak. This particular meteor shower is expected to have originated in the Quadrans Muralis constellation and is the remnants of a meteor that broke up more than half a millennia ago; asteroid 2003 EH1.

Related image

January 12th: Venus Comes Into View

January 12th will see the point in which Venus will reach its furthest Eastern elongation. The planet will be 47.1 degrees away from the Sun and provide the best views of the month. If you run on UTC time, you should be able to spot Venus after the sun sets, providing you scan the sky to the west.

Read More: Was Venus Once Habitable?

Image result for venus

January 17th: The Vesta Asteroid

The biggest and brightest asteroid on offer this month, Vesta, comes into view on the 17th of January. NASA say this one is pretty special and should well be worth a look. Locating the asteroid should not be too demanding, provided you have a decent telescope and look for Castor and Pollux; the twin stars of Gemini.

Related image

January 19th: Mercury Comes Into View

The 19th of January should provide our best opportunity to spot Mercury as the planet reaches its furthest elongation. The furthest elongation puts this planet at 24.1 degrees from our very own Sun. This should put it high in the Eastern sky before the sunrise using UTC time.

There will be many more fantastic sights to see and please feel free to comment below if you know anything special that I might have missed. Also check out my facebook page if you get a chance! Thanks!

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s