Here Are The Top Astronomy Events For January 2019

The first month of 2019! Happy New Year.

Let us start the year by reviewing what January has got in its store for the astronomy enthusiasts. Here are the astronomy events for this month.

January 4: The Quadrantid Meteor Shower

Quadrantids will be the first meteor shower of 2019. It is an annual meteor shower that occurs around 3 or 4 January when the Earth streams through the debris of the asteroid 2003 EH1. The shower will peak at 2:00 UTC on January 4. Look for the radiant of the shower near the star Arcturus and the arc of Big Dipper as shown below.

People living in Europe will have the best view of the shower. However, residents of India and nearby countries will have to catch the shower in the early hours of January 4 while the Americans can witness a few streaks on the way up to the peak. The average rate will be 11 meteors per hour. Watching the Quadrantids will be a cold business.

January 6: Partial Solar Eclipse

A partial solar eclipse will take place on Sunday, January 6 from 22:39 UTC (4:09 IST) to 4:37 UTC (10:07 IST). The map of the eclipse is shown below.

The alignment between the Sun and Moon will not be very exact, and so the Moon will only partially cover the Sun, and nowhere on Earth will see a total eclipse.

January 13: Close Approach Of Moon And Mars

The closest approach will be at 1:18 IST but by then, the pair will sink in the sky of New Delhi, India. (Image: Dominic Ford, In-The-Sky)

The Moon and Mars will share the same right ascension, with the Moon passing 5°20′ to the south of Mars. The Moon will be 6 days old. The Moon will be at mag -11.5 in the constellation Cetus, and Mars at mag 0.6 in the neighbouring constellation of Pisces. The pair will be too widely separated to fit within the field of view of a telescope or pair of binoculars, but will be visible to the naked eye.

January 21: Super Blood Wolf Moon

A total lunar eclipse will take place on January 21 and on the same day, the Moon will reach its closest distance to Earth, the perigee. When a full moon occurs at or near perigee, it gets supermoon status. The moon’s average distance from Earth is about 238,000 miles. And wolf moon? Ancient cultures gave full moons names based on the time of year. According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, “Amid the cold and deep snows of midwinter, the wolf packs howled hungrily outside Indian villages. Thus, the name for January’s full Moon.” The map of the eclipse is given below:

The map of total lunar eclipse of January 21. (Image: Dominic Ford, In-The-Sky)

January 22: Conjunction Of Venus And Jupiter

At 5:43 UTC (11:13 IST),Venus will make its closest approach to the Jupiter, with Venus passing 2°26′ to the north of Jupiter.

Venus will be at mag -4.3, and Jupiter at mag -1.9, both in the constellation Ophiuchus. The pair will be too widely separated to fit within the field of view of a telescope, but will be visible to the naked eye or through a pair of binoculars.

Also Watch: Full Astronomy Calendar 2019 (Subscribe To The Channel For More Such Updates)

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