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August sky has lots in store for us! NASA says watch out for these special events

You can watch planets, Perseids meteor shower, and Cygnus in August. Here is what NASA says.
Updated on: Jul 30 2022, 12:25 IST
NASA informs us about the things that can be watched in the sky in August. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)
NASA informs us about the things that can be watched in the sky in August. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

Do you like sky watching? The month of August is here and you can spot a lot of things out in the space. You can spot two planets in the morning sky, gawk at the Perseids meteor shower, and more. Informing about the same NASA tweeted, "Spot two planets in the morning sky, gawk at the Perseids meteor shower, and get down with the Cygnus (constellation). Here’s what else is up in the night sky this August:" Now all you need to do is grab your binoculars for planet viewing, the outlook for the Perseids, and flying with Cygnus the swan.

NASA in a report informed that the morning planet parade we have been enjoying the past few months comes to an end in August, with Venus and Saturn making their exits on opposite sides of the sky. But that still leaves Mars and Jupiter high overhead to enjoy. "In fact, August begins with a close conjunction of the Red Planet and distant ice giant planet Uranus. Uranus can be difficult to find without a self-guided telescope, but it's an easy object for binoculars if you know where to look. And on the 1st, you'll find the tiny, bluish disc of Uranus just northwest of Mars in the morning sky. They'll easily fit within the same field of view through binoculars," the research agency said.

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Also, on the morning of August 15, you will find the Moon only a finger's width from Jupiter. Like Mars and Uranus, they will make a great pairing through binoculars, and you will also likely catch a glimpse of Jupiter's four largest moons. The Moon will then join Mars on August 19th. This is another nice pairing for binoculars, plus you'll find the pair super close to the Pleiades – you may even be able to fit them all into the same view.

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Also Read: NASA plans to bring back Mars rock samples revealed

Moving to the evening sky, Saturn is transitioning from a late night and early morning object to an all-night sight. It's rising as night falls in August. Look low in the east around 9 p.m. to find it as a steady, yellowish point of light. You'll find that the Ringed Planet rises a bit earlier each night over the course of the month.

Saturn in August is directly on the opposite side of Earth from the Sun. NASA says that it is around this time when the Ringed Planet appears its biggest and brightest for the year. By the end of the month, you will start to notice Jupiter rising around 9pm to join Saturn. "This means Jupiter will be pulling double duty as an early evening object, appearing in the eastern sky, and an early morning one, appearing in the west," NASA said.

The Perseid meteors are an annual event many of the skywatchers look forward to, as they often produce lots of shooting stars to enjoy. Unfortunately, this year all but the brightest Perseids will be washed out by a full moon on the peak night of August 12.

You will find the constellation Cygnus, the swan, flying high in the eastern sky after dark in August. Cygnus has an overall shape like a T or cross, and contains a star pattern sometimes called "the Northern Cross." NASA said, "Cygnus is anchored by its brightest star, Deneb, which represents the swan's tail. Deneb is the northernmost of the three stars in the Summer Triangle, and it's visible even in bright city skies. On the other end of Cygnus from Deneb is double star Albireo, which is a stargazing favorite, as it shows beautiful blue and gold colors through even the most modest telescope."

Now, Cygnus lies right along the plane of the Milky Way, so it's dense with glittering stars and dark dust clouds, with lots of interest for telescope observers and astrophotographers to enjoy, including the North America Nebula, the Veil Nebula, and the Blinking Planetary Nebula. It also includes the open star clusters M29 and M39, which are visible with binoculars.

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First Published Date: 30 Jul, 12:25 IST