Here's what you can spot in the skies during April. (Image: NASA/JPL)
Countries across the world have imposed a lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus resulting in less noise and air pollution. With the skies being clearer than usual, now is the perfect time for stargazing from your balcony or rooftop. Luckily, this month has plenty of exciting celestial events lined up, starting with the Super Pink Moon tomorrow morning.
Super Pink Moon
In India, you can watch the Super Pink Moon on April 8, 2020, at 8:05 am in the morning. It will be a Full Moon during the perigee— Moon’s closes approach to the Earth’s orbit, thus making it a Super Moon. Since the Full Moon in April is known as Pink Moon as per old Native American Culture, the upcoming event will be called the Super Pink Moon. The Moon will be the brightest and look bigger than usual.
Representational image of a Full Moon. (Image: Pixabay)
In April, you have the rare chance to watch Mercury, Venus, Mars, as well as the Jupiter and Saturn. Some planets will be visible with naked eyes while some will be visible only with telescopes or binoculars.
Mercury usually appears as a bright “star” with a yellow hue rising in the eastern sky about an hour before the Sun. However, the planet will be visible in the evening this month as an evening star just after sunset.
Earth’s twin sister Venus always shines with a brilliant and steady silvery light. It will be visible alongside the Moon on April 26 making a side-by-side descend in the west-northwest sky. It will be at its greatest brilliancy on April 27, thus making it a good time to spot this month with telescope.
As per the Space.com, our neighbouring red planet will be visible in southeast each morning during April from magnitude +0.8 to +0.4. The planet shines like a “star” with a yellow-orange hue and can vary considerably in brightness.
Saturn (Image: NASA/JPL)
Jupiter, the biggest planet in our solar system will be visible in the mornings throughout the month, shining brightly well to the left of the Teapot pattern in Sagittarius. Since the planet will reach 90 degrees west of the Sun or the western quadrature, it will cast its shadow well to the west from Earth’s point of view, providing ecliptic view of the Galilean satellites, reported Space.com. On April 15, a waning crescent moon will engage with Jupiter and Saturn, making it a non-skippable event.
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The ringed planet of our solar system will be visible as part of a wide triangle with Jupiter and the Moon on April 15. The Moon will be 3 degrees below and slightly to the right of Saturn and 6 degrees to the lower left of Jupiter. Saturn shines like a yellowish-white star of moderate brightness.