By James Pugsley
(YELLOWKNIFE, NORTHWEST TERRITORIES) This week you may notice two notable conjunctions on that shiny new Astronomy calendar your uncle gave you for Christmas.
On Wednesday evening (Jan 7) watch as Jupiter and the Moon, two of the brightest objects in the sky, come within 5 degrees of each other near the constellation Leo. Jupiter has been a brilliant target to kick off the new year, and with a pair of binoculars or a small telescope you should have no problem observing the planetary disk and a few Jovian moons (seen as pinpoints of light near the planet).
SOLAR WIND PREDICTIONS • Two Coronal Mass Ejections are expected to impact Earth’s magnetic field this weekend, as illustrated by the WSA-Enlil Solar Wind Prediction Model.
(YELLOWKNIFE, NORTHWEST TERRITORIES) Observers across the North should be on alert for G1 (Minor) and G2 (Moderate) geomagnetic storms this weekend. Space weather forecasters are predicting Earth will be impacted by multiple Coronal Mass Ejections, large gusts of solar wind that erupted near Sunspot AR2241 during M-Class solar flare events on Wednesday and Thursday.
WHERE TO LOOK • The apparent origin of Monday’s Leonid Meteor Shower is the constellation Leo, located just below the Big Dipper. The stars of Leo (along with Jupiter) will rise in the east just after midnight, followed by a crescent moon at 3 a.m. MT.
By James Pugsley
(YELLOWKNIFE, NORTHWEST TERRITORIES) Dark skies and the relatively feeble light from a waning crescent moon will set the stage for a promising Leonid meteor shower on Monday, November 17. The actual peak of the shower will occur before dark, however observers at high latitudes in North America can still expect to see 10-15 meteors per hour in the eastern sky late evening, shifting to the southeastern sky overnight.
Earth is encountering the dusty remnants of comet Tempel-Tuttle, a periodic comet that was discovered in 1865 and orbits the Sun every 33 years. As Earth passes by we see the orbital path of the comet is oriented near the constellation Leo, found just below the Big Dipper. Leo will rise in the east near midnight, accompanied by nearby Jupiter and a crescent moon. Continue reading