FROM THIS WORLD | Seasonal Skywatching – a preview of what to look for in the night sky for the season ahead
Meteorologist / scientific writer
Thursday, November 29, 2018, 20:21 – As the days get colder and the nights get longer, winter is coming! Here are the most popular events for the winter in the winter of 2018-2019, as well as a few additions, so as not to look into your eyes.
Winter may not be the easiest time of the year, but it may be the most useful.
Clear winter nights often represent better viewing than other seasons, as airborne overheads tend to be drier and more stable. The stars, the planets and the moon seem clearer and clearer, as their light meets with less turbulence in the air before it reaches us. The drier air also reflects less light pollution from our urban centers, so our skies tend to be darker, which allows us to see more stars and more meteorite meteors during annual meteor showers.
So stay warm when you are weathering this upcoming season, and do not miss these great events.
• December 22 – The longest full moon of 2018
• January 3 – Earth at perihelion
• 3-4 January. Quadrantide meteor shower peaks
• January 20-21 – Super Moon Wolf Moon Total Lunar Eclipse
• February 21 – Zodiacal light after evening twilight, western sky for two weeks
• March 20 – Equinox
• Bonus – Conjunctions and reconciliations (January 22 – February 27)
DECEMBER 22 – LONG-TERM MOON 2018
This year, December Full cold moon falls on the night of the 22nd, just one night after the longest night of the year.
That night the moon will grow at 5 pm. local time, and it will be set at 8:32 am on the morning of the 23rd, for a full time viewing Full Moon 15 hours and 32 minutes!
This is the longest full moon of the whole year!
We have not seen the Full Moon for the last time since December 2010 (when it was in the sky for 15 hours and 54 minutes 20th)!
JANUARY 3 – LAND ON PERIELLION
This event is not much. Instead, it is just something to experience, as the Earth passes through what is known as perihelion,
When the earth travels around the sun, it does not trace the perfect circle. In fact, it follows the elliptical path.
This means that even while we usually use the average distance from the Sun 1 "astronomical unit" or 1 "AU", equal to 150 million kilometers, in some points of its orbit the Earth is closer to the Sun, and at other points, further.
This scheme of the Earth's orbit exaggerates the elliptical shape of the orbit and the relative dimensions of the Earth, the Moon and the Sun. Credit: NASA
Every year, around January 3, the Earth reaches its closest point to the Sun. It is called perihelion,
If you want to mark an exact moment, pause for a short break in your night, exactly at 05:20 UTC, January 3rd.
• 1:50 AM Jan. 3 Newfoundland Standard Time
• 1:20 AM Jan. 3 Atlantic Standard Time
• 12:20 of January 3 Eastern Standard Time
• 11:20 pm. January 2 Central Standard Time
• 10:20. Jan 2
• 9:20 pm. January 2 Pacific Standard Time
Do you feel anything when this happens? Not specifically from an astronomical event, but it's still pretty cool to note the moment when this happens.
January 3-4 – QUADRANTID METEOR SHOWER PEAKS
The best of winter meteor showers occurs immediately after the New Year – Quadrantids,
The location of the quadrant-shining on the night of January 3-4, 2019. Credit: Stellarium / Scott Sutherland
Unlike the Quadrantid shower in 2018, which was mostly washed by a very bright, almost full Moon, this year's meteor shower occurs, while the Moon is just a thin sliver of a crescent moon that slips over the horizon very soon after sunset.
This means that we will have a beautiful dark sky throughout the night, and observers have the best opportunity to catch even the faintest meteors flying through the sky during January 3-4 in a shower.
Quadrantids that originate from an asteroid known as 2003 EH1 (probably an extinct comet) are just one of two well-known meteor showers originating from a rocky body (December heminides are different). Both of these meteor showers also have excellent displays, and Quadrantids provide an average 120 meteors per hour (although the actual speed can vary from 60 to 200)!
HOW TO VIEW THE METEOR EXHIBITIONS
The first thing to consider when planning the observation of a meteor shower is to monitor the weather.
Do not forget to check the Weather Network on TV, on our website or in our application, just to make sure that you have the most up-to-date forecast.
Then you need to get away from the city lights, and the farther you can get, the better.
See below: What does light pollution do in the Milky Way's urban views?
For most regions of Canada, getting out of light pollution is just a matter of driving outside your city, town or village. In some areas, for example, in southwestern and central Ontario and along the St. Lawrence River, the concentration of light pollution is very high. Far enough from one city to avoid its light pollution, unfortunately, tends to put you under the dome of pollution of the next city. In these areas there are dark defenders of the dark sky, but the best choice for skyscrapers for a dark sky, as a rule, leads to the north.
Once you have checked, you will have a clear sky, and you avoid urban pollution of light, stop somewhere in a safe and dark place (provincial parks, even if you are limited to parking, are usually a great place).
For better viewing, to see how most meteors are possible, it is very important that you give time to touch the dark. Optimally 30-45 minutes.
During this time, avoid all bright lights, including mobile phone screenIf you need to use your mobile phone, think about reducing the amount of blue light that displays the screen (usually in the screen settings of your phone) and reduces its brightness. In addition, there are applications that can put your phone in the "night mode", which further switches the screen colors to red. Once you do this, checking your phone while watching the clouds will not have such a big impact on your night vision.
Note. Although the graph presented here indicates the location of the “radiant” meteor shower — a point in the sky where meteors appear to be occurring, meteors themselves may appear anywhere in the sky.
So the best way to watch the meteor shower is to lie back or lean back so you can look straight up so you can see as much of the sky as you can, right away. Bring a blanket to spread on the ground, or a lawn chair to sit, or even lean on your car.
Attracting some relatives and friends is also great, as it is better to share this experience with others.
JANUARY 20-21 – SUPER WAVE LUNAR GENERAL LUNAR ECLIPS
Almost a year after 2018 "Super Blue Moon Total Lunar Eclipse" we will see another, although this will not be "blue."
On the night of January 21-22, a full wave moon will pass through the northern half of the earth's shadow, producing a total lunar eclipse. The graph above shows the way the moon travels through the Earth’s piembral and umbral shadows, and it details the eclipse time for various time zones throughout Canada.
For an extra bonus, since the Moon will be very close to the perigee – its closest distance to Earth – it will be "Super Moon Moon Wolf Total Lunar Eclipse,
Hope for a clear sky for this event, since we will not have another Total lunar eclipse, so beautiful compared to North America (so that everyone in Canada has a chance to see it), until May 2022!
FEBRUARY 21 – ZODIACAL LIGHT
This winter, the evening skyscrapers will have the opportunity to see a huge cloud of interplanetary dust that surrounds the sun, which manifests itself in our night sky as a phenomenon known as “Zodiac light”.
In the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, the Observer Handbook of 2019, Dr. Roy Bishop, Professor Emeritus of Physics at the University of Acadia, wrote:
The zodiacal light appears as a huge, gently radiant white light pyramid with its base near the horizon, and its axis is focused on the zodiac (or, better, the ecliptic). In the brightest parts, it surpasses the brightness of the central Milky Way.
According to Dr. Bishop, the event, although this phenomenon can be quite bright, it can be easily ruined by moonlight, haze, or light pollution. In addition, since it’s best to look at it immediately after dusk, inexperienced people sometimes confuse it at dusk and thus miss the mark.
On clear nights, and under a dark sky, look at the western horizon, half an hour after twilight disappeared, from about February 21 to March 7.
MARCH 20 – EQUINOX
When our Earth moves in its orbit, the inclination of the planet causes a change in the angle of the Sun in our sky.
From late September to late March, the North Pole deviates from the Sun, so the Sun is located more directly above the southern hemisphere, and the Sun reaches its lowest point in the northern sky (and the highest in the southern sky) on or around December 22.
From the end of March to the end of September, on the contrary, the South Pole deviates from the Sun, so the Sun is located more directly above the northern hemisphere, reaching its highest point in the northern sky (and the lowest in the southern sky) at about June 22.
At two points between these periods – especially around March 20 and September 22 – it seems to us that the sun crosses the equator. In March, it crosses from south to north, and in September it crosses from north to south.
Exact moment when the sun seems above the equatorin any case is called equinox,
In which hemisphere you are, at that time, it is precisely determined what kind of equinox you are experiencing. In March, the northern hemisphere marks the vernal equinox, while the southern hemisphere marks the autumnal equinox. In September, the opposite is true.
The coming equinox, signifying the beginning of spring in the north and autumn in the south, occurs exactly after two to six in the evening. EDT, March 20.
REDUCTIONS AND PERFORMANCE
Look at the clear sky on most nights of the year, and it’s very likely that you will notice the Moon along with one or more planets (Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn are the most visible) at least at some point during the night.
On certain nights of the year, these objects are especially close (at least from our point of view, here on Earth), which astronomers call them "conjunction& # 39; while on other nights some of these bright objects can line up across the sky at "alignment".
Here are the prominent conjunctions and alignments for the winter of 2019.
These winter alliances and units of 2019 are in the early morning, early dawn dinner. Credit: Stellarium / Scott Sutherland
• January 22 and 23 – conjunctiva of Venus and Jupiter
• January 31 – alignment of Venus-Moon-Jupiter
• February 18 – conjunction of Venus and Saturn, next to Jupiter
• February 27 – Jupiter-Luna conjunction, near Venus and Saturn
• February 28 – alignment of Venus and Saturn-Moon-Jupiter
What is the end of the year? Many things happen, but the biggest events are the total solar eclipse of the southern hemisphere in July and the November transit of Mercury through the face of the Sun!
Sources: IMO | Royal Astronomical Society of Canada
RELEVANT: SEE THE BIG "BLOOD OF THE MOON" OF THE CENTURY, DARK RED IN TIME
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