Every Monday, I select the northern hemisphere celestial high points (mid-northern latitudes) for the coming week, but be sure to check my main feed for more in-depth articles on stargazing, astronomy, eclipses and more.
What to see in the night sky this week: June 13-19, 2022
No prizes for guessing which will be the “best” celestial view of the week. The first full moon of summer 2022 in the northern hemisphere will not only hang particularly low on the horizon, but it’s also the biggest and brightest “supermoon” of the year. Don’t miss it!
Monday, June 13, 2022: The Moon and Antares
The 99% illuminated Moon and the bright star Antares will be just 3° apart at dusk tonight. See the two together in the southeast sky as night falls.
Tuesday, June 14, 2022: A complete ‘Super Strawberry Moon’
Dusk tonight is the time to look to the eastern horizon, because that’s exactly when a ‘strawberry supermoon’ – a full moon and the largest ‘supermoon’ and the brightest of 2022 – will appear in gorgeous orange hues. Check the exact hours of moonrise for your location and exit looking east. You will be rewarded with a beautiful, huge-looking orange orb on the horizon!
The June full moon is the lowest and last to rise of 2022. It rises in the southeast in the summer and sets in the southwest, remaining as long in the summer night sky as the Sun in the winter day sky.
Thursday, June 16, 2022: Mercury furthest from the Sun
Look low in the eastern sky just before sunrise and you might see Mercury at its greatest westerly elongation‚ farthest from the Sun in the morning sky. Super bright Venus in her appearance as the “Morning Star” will be a dazzling neighbor.
Object of the week: Comet C/2017 K2 (PANSTARRS)
It’s not as impressive as Summer 2020 Neowise Comet, but if you have a 6 inch telescope you can try searching for C/2017 K2 (PANSTARRS). It’s been on astronomers’ wish list for five years, even since it was discovered at 16 au (Earth-Sun distances), but it’s not illuminated as much as had been hoped. It is currently at magnitude +11 in the constellation Ophiuchus and should be visible from the Northern Hemisphere until around October. here is a chart for C/2017 K2.
K2 has been traveling for millions of years from its home in the Oort Cloud, a spherical region on the outskirts of our solar system. When discovered, it was the most distant active comet ever observed entering the solar system.
I wish you clear skies and big eyes.
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