Space Science at UTK

Cool Things in the Sky

Cool Things

For the month of August 2017

The Great American Eclipse will occur on the 21st of this month. It is best to be observing sometime before totality so that you won’t miss the corona, the sun’s outer most and most beautiful layer. To see the corona, you must be in the path of totality. Knoxville is not in the path of totality so what you see in Knoxville will be a partial eclipse. You must go South or West of Knoxville. You don’t have to go far but you do have to go. And remember, only use Certified Solar Glasses for safe solar viewing.
Here is an example of the timing for the eclipse using Neyland Stadium as a reference point and the link below for the information. Partial eclipse begins at 1:04 PM, maximum eclipse (partial) occurs at 2:34 PM and partial eclipse ends at 3:58 PM. You will not see totality from this landmark. The times will vary slightly depending on your location so be sure to check the website below.
Use the following link to assist in finding where you might go to see totality.

And now for the planets this month:

Mercury is well placed for the first couple of weeks this month in the West just after sunset.

Venus is the brilliant star like object in the East-northeast all month.

Jupiter remains in the West-southwest evening skies all month though sinking toward the horizon.

Saturn remains in the southern evening skies all month

The Perseid Meteors will make their annual appearance on the night of the 12th and morning of the 13th.  The waning crescent moon will rise around 11:40 PM and be in the sky until sunrise interfering with how many meteors we might see. The peak time will be very early on the morning of the 13th.

The moon phases for this month are full on the 7th, last quarter on the 15th, new on the 21st, this the day of the Total Eclipse, and first quarter on the 29th.