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Solar System Events Calendar 2018 - 2019

Bringing you 90 days worth of solar system events. These include things of up-coming interest like equinoxes and solstices, major spacecraft events, and things you can see with your naked eye like eclipses and comets.

Geminids Meteor Shower

Starts:
2018/12/06
The Geminids originate from 3200 Phaethon which is an asteroid whose orbit takes it close to the sun. The heat of the sun causes a dust tail to be formed which gives rise to the Geminids. The Geminids are known for producing up to 60 multicolored meteors per hour at their peak at around the 13th-14th December. although some meteors should be visible from December 6 - 19. Best viewing is usually to the east after midnight. Visible in northern and southern hemispheres. LinkEnds:
2019/02/19

Comet 46P/Wirtanen Closest Approach

At:
2018/12/16 12:00
46P/Wirtanen was discovered photographically on January 17, 1948. On 16 December 2018 the comet will pass 7,260,000 miles (11,680,000 km) from Earth reaching an estimated magnitude of 3 to 7.5 making this pass the brightest one predicted, and the brightest close approach for the next 20 years.It's hoped that it might just get bright enough to see with the naked eye in dark sky conditions. Link

Ursids Meteor Shower

Starts:
2018/12/17
The Ursids appear to be linked to the comet 8P/Tuttle. They produce around 10 meteors per hour at their peak and can be seen in the northern hemisphere after midnight. LinkEnds:
2019/02/23

December Solstice

At:
2018/12/21 22:22
The shortest day for the northern hemisphere and the longest for the southern hemisphere.

New Horizons Encounters MU69 (Ultima Thule)

At:
2019/01/01 05:33
New Horizons has a fly-by with Ultima Thule, the first Kuiper Belt Object to be explored by man. Ultima Thule (or 2014 MU69) is approximately 25km across and is expected to shed light on how the solar system was formed. No other object seen by man will have spent it's entire life in the deep freeze of space, never being warmed by the Sun. Due to a 6 hour communications delay and the fact that New Horizons will be very busy, it will take another day or so before high quality images will be received. Link

Credit: Steve Grivven/NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI

Credit: Steve Grivven/NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI

Quadrantids Meteor Shower

Starts:
2019/01/01 12:00
The object responsible for the origin of the Quadrantids is not certain. This shower is often difficult to observe because it has a very sharp peak in activity which lasts only for a few hours. The peak occurs around the 3rd/4th January with around 90 meteors per hour. Visible in the northern hemisphere. LinkEnds:
2019/01/12 12:00

Partial Solar Eclipse

Starts:
2019/01/05 23:34:02
A moderate partial eclipse, with 71% of the Sun covered for viewers closest to the center, will create an interesting spectacle for observers from north-east China, Japan, and eastern Russia. LinkEnds:
2019/01/06 03:48:44

Total Lunar Eclipse

Starts:
2019/01/21 02:36:30
A shallow total eclipse will see the Moon in relative darkness for 1 hour and 2 minutes. The Moon will be 20% of its diameter into the Earth's umbral shadow, and should be significantly darkened for viewers from the Americas, Europe, and most of Africa. The partial eclipse will last for 3 hours and 17 minutes in total. LinkEnds:
2019/01/21 07:48:00

Chandrayaan-2 Misson Launch to Land a Rover on the Moon

At:
2019/01/31 12:00
Following the mostly successful Chandrayaan-1 lunar orbiter in 2008-9, the Indian Space Reasearch Organisation is sending another mission to the moon comprising an orbiter, lander and rover. Scientific goals include studies of lunar topography, mineralogy, elemental abundance, the lunar exosphere, and signatures of hydroxyl and water ice. The rover is designed to operate for only one lunar day (15 earth days). Note: Launch date varies slightly between different sources. Link, Link2

The Illustrated Image on ISRO's Chandrayaan - II.

The Illustrated Image on ISRO's Chandrayaan - II.