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The sky is not a painting, it's a movie. Stars pulse, flare, some explode as supernova, asteroids whiz by the earth, new comets appear in the sky, Aurora sets the northern skies ablaze and meteors streak through Earth's atmosphere.
The Full Moon for August
The August Full Sturgeon Moon. The fishing tribes are given credit for the naming of this Moon, since sturgeon, a large fish of the Great Lakes and other major bodies of water, were most readily caught during this month. A few tribes knew it as the Full Red Moon because, as the Moon rises, it appears reddish through any sultry haze. It was also called the Green Corn Moon or Grain Moon. Courtesy Farmers Almanac.
August Visible Lunar Highlights
All times are EST
The Planets Visibility for August
Lost in Sun's glare Evening W
Lost in Sun's glare Evening W
Venus will next appear in the morning sky late August.
Morning Sky E
Midmonth August Mars will be in the morning sky just before sunrise at 1.7 magnitude in the constellation Cancer the Crab rising at 4:44 a.m..
To find Mars look for a reddish object low in the west northwest sky. To see which part of the surface is visible at any time, check out the Mars Profiler at Sky & Telescope Magazine's web page.
Lost in Sun's glare Evening sky W
Evening - Morning sky S
Saturn midmonth is at +0.4 magnitude and diameter 00°00'.17" setting around 1:11 a.m. It will be highest in the south sky after sunset midmonth. Saturn is in the constellation Libra the Scales. Through a small telescope Saturn will reveal the famous rings of the planet. Rings currently are 24.0° tilt. See: Saturn's moons locations
Evening - Morning Sky E
Uranus midmonth at 5.8 magnitude and diameter 00°00'.04" rising around 10:18 p.m.. Uranus is located in the constellation Pisces. Best observed around 4:00 - 5:00 a.m. when higher in the sky. A moderate-sized telescope will show it as a green-gray disk. See: Sky and Telescope location PDF. Courtesy: Sky and Telescope
Evening - Morning Sky ESW
Neptune midmonth is at 7.8 magnitude and diameter 00°00'.02" rising around 8:45 p.m.. A moderate-sized telescope will show it as a blue green disk. Neptune is located in the constellation Aquarius. Best observed around 2:00 a.m. when highest in the sky. See: Sky and Telescope location PDF. Courtesy: Sky and Telescope
4Vesta and Ceres
4Vesta at 6.9 magnitude is in the constellation Cetus the Whale. 4Vesta is best observed around 4:30 a.m. when highest in the sky. Ceres at 7.5 magnitude. It is in the constellation Microscopium the Microscope, it is best observed around midnight when highest in the sky low in the south.
Pluto at midmonth is located amid the stars of the Milky Way in the constellation Sagittarius. Pluto is at magnitude +14.1 and diameter 00°00'.00". Pluto is highest in sky around 10:30 p.m.. A large telescope is needed to see this distant object.
Comets Brighter than 8 Magnitude
For more on current Comets and locations see: Seiichi Yoshida web site here.
Get ready for the Perseids! This shower is the most popular meteor shower. The shower peaks on August 12/13th. Expect 50-75 meteors per hour at maximum. Conditions will be ideal for observing with no moon to interfere. The Perseids are particles released from comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle during its numerous returns to the inner solar system.
Some local links below to Heavens Above satellite information website.
Also see: Spaceflight NASA
Real time solar wind dials are linked live to the ACE Spacecraft.
If the dial on the left (Magnetic Field) has dipped below zero, the speed is high and the dial dynamic pressure is in the yellow/red, be alert for Aurora. Anytime the gauges are in the Red and the dial on the left, the Magnetic Field BZ has dipped to the yellow-red... Aurora will be occurring in our area. See link to solar wind gauge here: REAL TIME SOLAR WIND
See explanation of solar wind dials below by clicking on photo of dials