Astronomy Info & Events: June

Moon Phases

June 1: First Quarter Moon

June 9: Full Moon (the Strawberry Moon or Honey Moon) and smallest Full Moon of 2017!

June 17: Last Quarter Moon

June 23: New Moon

June 30: First Quarter Moon

Special Events

June 1 to June 30: Watch for noctilucent clouds in the evening northern sky this month! 

June 2: Lunar straight wall visible through a telescope tonight!

June 3: Venus at greatest western elongation (46 degrees)

June 9: Smallest Full Moon of 2017, Moon is near apogee (406,401 km away from Earth

June 12: Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (Edmonton Centre) meeting from 7:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. in the Margaret Zeidler Star Theatre.
Guest speaker: Dr. Claudio Kopper The Ice Cube Neutrino Observatory: Chasing Particles in Antarctica. Free for anyone to attend

June 15: Saturn at opposition (75 light minutes from the Earth).

June 20Summer Solstice occurs at exactly 10:24 p.m. MDT

June 27: Waxing crescent Moon near the bright star Regulus (evening)

June 30: Jupiter near the First Quarter Moon

Visible Planets

Mercury is not visible this month from our northern latitude.

Venus is visible low along the eastern horizon before sunrise during the month.  Look for the waning crescent Moon near Venus in the predawn hours of June 20 and 21.  Venus is unmistakable as the brightest object (other than the Moon) in the predawn eastern sky.

Mars is not visible this month as it is too close to the Sun to be seen from our vantage point.  

Jupiter is located in the southwestern sky at sunset and is currently situated in the constellation of Virgo, the maiden, just above and to the west of the bright star, Spica.  On the night of June 3 look for Jupiter below the waxing gibbous Moon and then on the night of June 30 look for Jupiter near the First Quarter Moon.  Jupiter will be a highlight of telescopic observing this month at the TELUS World of Science - Edmonton’s RASC Observatory.   

Saturn rises just after sunset along the southeastern horizon and then is found low in the southwestern sky by sunrise, being visible all night long.  While Saturn is located within the lower east portion of the constellation of Ophiuchus, the serpent bearer, it can be found more easily by looking for it just above the spout of the “teapot” of the constellation of Sagittarius, the archer. Saturn reaches opposition on June 15.  Look for Saturn very close to waning gibbous Moon on the evening of June 9.  Saturn’s rings are tilted by 26.7 degrees which provides for exceptional views of the ring system through a telescope.  Saturn will be a highlight of our summer observing from the RASC Observatory.