During 2012, we witnessed some of best astronomical events in recent history.
Venus started off the year as the brightest planet in the evening sky and will end the year low in the southeast morning sky. In May, we saw a partial solar eclipse right at sunset.
In June we saw a partial lunar eclipse and the Transit of Venus. In August, Curiosity landed on Mars bringing back data and exquisite pictures.
As we say farewell to 2012, we look forward to another exciting year of astronomical events, which are listed in the 2013 Hamilton Amateur Astronomers calendar.
The calendar is a work of art and a labour of love by club volunteers. It might be the best that the club has ever produced.
Pictures in the calendar are taken by local members and it’s currently on sale at the next club meeting for $15. All proceeds go to the club for public education.
Mercury is low in the southeast during morning twilight. Mars sets in the southwest shortly after sunset. Jupiter is in the northeast during evening twilight and is visible all night. Saturn is difficult to see low in the southeast during morning twilight.
Dec. 2 – Jupiter is at opposition and will rise at sunset and sets at sunrise.
Dec. 3 – Mercury, Venus and Saturn are nearly equally spaced in the morning sky.
Dec. 4 – Mercury is at its greatest angle from the glare of the sun below Venus and Saturn in the eastern morning sky.
Dec. 10 – The crescent moon is close and below Saturn in the morning sky.
Dec. 11 – The crescent moon is close and groups with Venus and Mercury in the morning sky for an impressive event.
Dec. 13 – Under a moonless sky, the Geminid Meteor Shower peaks. More than 60 meteors per hour can be seen from a dark location. Some are visible Dec. 6-19 and are caused by debris falling from an extinct comet. It’s one of the major meteor showers of the year.
Dec. 14 – Hamilton Amateur Astronomers meeting 7:30-9:30 p.m., Spectator building, 44 Frid St., Hamilton.. Free admission with door prizes. An optional food bank donation of non-perishable goods will be collected. During the same night, the crescent moon is close to Mars low in the southwest evening sky.
Dec. 21 – The Winter Solstice marks the first day of winter at 6:12 a.m.
Dec. 28 – The full moon is called the Cold Moon.
For more information, please see the Hamilton Amateur Astronomers web site at www.amateurastronomy.org or call (905) 627-4323.
- Astronomy Gift Guide
- Moonless nights will make for great Leonid Meteor Show! (fox41blogs.typepad.com)
- Telescope clinic (theskythismonth.wordpress.com)
- Carr Marketing Group