Yesterday, the first lunar eclipse of 2013 took place. The partial lunar eclipse started at 2:03 p.m. and ended at 6:11 p.m. making the eclipse not visible to New England sky watchers. Being that this was a partial lunar eclipse, most observers were not expecting anything spectacular but as the eclipse commenced, many fascinating photos started to show up online. Here is one such photo from Macedonia. Though we missed this eclipse in New England, on October 18th a Penumbral Lunar Eclipse will take place and will be visible to all of us in New England.
Early Sunday morning (April 28) Saturn will reach opposition. This is the point at which Saturn is on the opposite side of planet Earth than the Sun. This also means that Saturn is at its closest point to Earth for the viewing season. This is the not only the best time to snap that perfect photograph of Saturn but also a great time to observe Saturn and its beautiful rings. If skies permit we will be viewing Saturn tonight so be sure to stop in for some great views. If clouds block our views tonight be sure to stop in at Seagrave Observatory in North Scituate tomorrow night for a second chance.
This coming week the peak of the Eta Aquarid Meteor Shower will begin. The peak period lasts from May 4 – May 7 with the early morning hours of the 5th and 6th being the best time to spot the most meteors. The Eta Aquarid shower is an average meteor shower producing upwards of 10 meteors per hour during peak times. The thin waning crescent Moon will rise in the hours before dawn offering spectacular views and will not hinder visibility of Eta Aquarid meteors. If sky conditions are optimal we may be on site at Frosty Drew Observatory to observe the Eta Aquarids.
Keep your eyes to the sky as our best viewing season is about to begin!