Astronomy Info - January
New Moon: January 1
First Quarter: January 7
Full Moon: January 15 (Full Wolf Moon)
Last Quarter: January 23
New Moon: January 30
New Moon at perigee (356,923 km), coastal areas will expect high tides
Quadrantid meteor shower peaks (up to 100 meteors seen per hour!)
Earth at perihelion (closest to the Sun) at a distance of 0.983 AU or 147,104,781 km
Jupiter at opposition!!
Venus at inferior conjunction (in between the Sun and the Earth)
Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (Edmonton Centre) meeting.
Time: 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm in the Margaret Zeidler Star Theatre.
Free for anyone to attend.
Jupiter 4.9 degrees N of the Moon
Moon at apogee (406,532 km from Earth); smallest Full Moon of 2014
Saturn about 1 degree N of the Moon
Mercury at it greatest eastern elongation (18.4 degrees E of Sun)
Mercury slowly begins to appear along the southwestern horizon after sunset by around January 21, gaining elevation for the rest of the month and becoming easier to spot. Look for Mercury just to the south of the very slim waxing crescent Moon (1.3 day-old Moon) on the evening of January 31.
Venus starts the month shining brilliantly low along the southwestern horizon after sunset but then sinks into the glare of the setting Sun and is lost from view. On January 11 Venus will be at inferior conjunction and by mid-month look for Venus to emerge out the Sun’s rising glare in the northeastern predawn sky. For the rest of the month Venus continues to gain elevation in our predawn sky from day to day along the eastern horizon. On January 2 look for Venus below the slim waxing crescent Moon along the southwestern horizon just after sunset. The waning crescent Moon passes just south of Venus during the predawn hours of January 28.
Mars is found within the constellation of Virgo this month and can be seen just above the bright star Spica. Look for Mars above the waning gibbous Moon on the mornings of January 22 and 23. As you continue to watch Mars, look for it brightening in our sky as it makes its way to opposition on April 8 and its closest distance to Earth on April 14.
Jupiter rises along the northeastern horizon around sunset and is visible all night long moving westward as the night progresses. Jupiter is located in the constellation of Gemini, the twins, and is highest in the sky near local midnight as Jupiter will be at opposition on January 5. This month provides the best viewing opportunity this year to look at this planet through a telescope. On the evening of January 15 see a close gathering of the planet Jupiter with the waxing gibbous Moon.
Saturn rises in the east-southeast a little after 4:00 a.m. local time and then moves higher in the sky until it sits almost due south at sunrise. Saturn is found within the constellation boundaries of Libra, the scales, and is found just to the east of the bright star Spica of the constellation of Virgo, the maiden. Look for Saturn about 1 degree above the waning crescent Moon on the morning of January 25.