October is the month for full Moons!

Lots of fun things happening this month. Even more fun is to listen to SkyCaramba talk about how many times a full moon occurs on Halloween over the centuries – give a listen!

USA - Penumbral Eclipse of the Moon on November 30, 2020

Same video with no sound can be found here.

Hi everyone! This is the fourth and last penumbral eclipse for this year, seen from the states. The first two could not be seen from the USA (earlier this year). This is a minor viewing affair concerning eclipses in general. The Moon will look like it is a shade darker on the northern portion of the Moon at maximum eclipse, which will occur at 4:43 am EST. The interest in this is, “can you see it or not?” I will say maybe, but I hope you give it a shot to see for yourself on Monday morning of November 30th! The next total eclipse of the Moon, for the states, will be on May 26, 2021.

Total Eclipse of the Sun on December 14, 2020 in Chile and Argentina.

On Monday, December 14th, the Moon will once again pass in front of the Sun to produce a total solar eclipse. The path of totality will cross Chile and Argentina. No major cities will see totality…lots of partial eclipses though! Greatest Eclipse will occur in Argentina at 16:13 UT or 10:13 am CST with a maximum duration of 2 minutes and 10 seconds. This is some 30 seconds shorter than what we experienced in the states back in 2017. So this will not be a dark eclipse, but it will be fun to watch, if you have the opportunity, none-the-less!

Retrograde Motion of Mars 2020

The video, above, shows why Mars “goes retrograde.” Basically, Earth is lapping Mars in a two-way race around the sun. Our planet is faster, so Mars seems to go backwards during the weeks of closest approach.

Music by Bernard Herrmann from the film Fahrenheit 451

Comet NEOWISE July 14th, 2020 – morning

25 second exposure with a Canon camera with a 50 mm lens. The comet is fading. I would estimate it to be 2.5 to 3 in apparent magnitude to the naked-eye! The comet will get higher in the evening sky as the days progress towards the northwest, but at the same time, day-by-day, it is fading!

Comet NEOWISE July 07th, 2020 – morning  45 minutes before sunrise.

Venus fell back into the morning sky soon after reaching inferior conjunction on June 3rd, 2020. This animation covers from June 10th, 2020, until February 5th, 2021. Venus will be at greatest elongation west on August 13th. As you can see, Venus will be at its highest or farthest from the horizon in the first week of September. Afterward, it will slowly go back down until it disappears during the first week in February. Venus will reach superior conjunction on March 25th, 2021.

Oh yes, don’t forget to watch Mercury loop twice above the horizon this year. Also, I left the Moon out of the video. Moves by too quickly in this scene!