Space Science at UTK

Cool Things in the Sky

Cool Things

For the month of June 2018


It’s almost a planet-fest this month starting with brilliant Venus in the Western sky at sunset. Just after 9PM by midmonth Venus will be about 30 degrees above the horizon and sets about 11:30 PM.

Over in the South-southeast is the next brightest object in the sky, king of the planets, Jupiter. A waxing gibbous moon sits north of Jupiter by about 4 degrees on the 24th.

Looking much further down and a bit to the East the yellowish ringed planet Saturn is rising. Saturn will be opposite the sun from earth on the 27th as it sits just 1.8 degrees south of an almost full moon presenting a nice conjunction. The next month or so will make for some terrific viewing of the ringworld.

Mars climbs above the East-southeastern horizon just after 11:45 PM and will reach opposition next month.
Best chance to see Mercury will be late this month in the West-northwestern twilight.

So the days a longer and the nights are warmer as we reach the summer solstice on the 21st at 6:07 AM. This will be nearly the longest day with the sun reaching its highest point in the sky at local noon for the year.

The moon phases for this month are last quarter on the 6th, new on the 13th, first quarter on the 20th and full on the 28th.