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Home / Astronomy Info & Events: August

Astronomy Info & Events: August

The Visible Planets

Mercury is visible with difficulty low in the east-northeast sky before sunrise from around August 2 to August 23. It reaches greatest elongation west (19 degrees west of the Sun) on August 9.

Venus is not visible this month and will return to our evening sky in September.

Mars is too close to the Sun to be seen this month.

Jupiter is the brilliant object located in the constellation of Serpens Cauda (part of Ophiuchus), the tail of the serpent, and is seen as the bright object low in the southern sky after sunset. During the evening of August 9, look for the waxing gibbous Moon above and to the east of the bright planet. Jupiter will be one of the highlights of evening observing at the RASC Observatory this summer.

Saturn now rises before sunset along the southeastern horizon and is located in the constellation of Sagittarius, the archer. The waxing gibbous Moon can be seen very near Saturn through the evening hours of August 12/13. Saturn will also be one of the highlights of evening observing at the RASC Observatory this summer.

Moon Phases

August 7 First Quarter Moon

August 15 Full Moon (The Sturgeon Moon)

August 23 Last Quarter Moon

August 30 New Moon

Special Events

International Space Station (ISS) Observable Passes

During the month of August there will be a few observable passes of the ISS. They will occur the evening of August 1 and at then starting again at end of the month on August 29. Check the website http://www.heavens-above.com for viewing times for your location.

50th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing

Special viewing events will take place for the first couple of weeks of August (and during other times during the rest of the year) to commemorate the 50th anniversary celebration of first Moon landing, Apollo 11. The Moon will be well placed from August 3 to August 17 to view the Moon through telescopes at the RASC Observatory at TWOSE. Please check the TELUS World of Science – Edmonton’s website for all details on events for this special celebration and for operating times of the RASC Observatory.

August 5 Civic holiday

August 9 Lunar straight wall visible tonight!

August 11 Jupiter stationary and slowly begins prograde motion after today.

August 12/13 The summer’s best meteor shower, the Perseids, peak tonight! The waxing gibbous Moon’s light will interfere a bit with viewing this meteor shower over the night.

August 12 Saturn is found 3 degrees left (east) of the Moon tonight.

August 14 Venus is at superior conjunction (other side of the Sun as seen from the Earth).

August 25 It was 30 years ago today that Voyager 2 arrived at Neptune.

August 28 Saskatchewan Summer Star Party, Cypress Hills, SK. (Runs till September 2)