by Peter Williams

Sky at Night

Scruton Sky at Night – March 2021

27th February 2021

The skies are gradually getting lighter in the evening with the Spring Equinox on 20 March – equal day and night, and the change to BST on 28 March when the clocks go forward one hour.

Jezero Crater, Mars

Scruton Sky at Night (Mars Special)

29th January 2021

The night skies are fairly ‘quiet’ this month with a full Moon on the 27th. There is, however, a close encounter on the evening of the 18th between the crescent Moon and, just above it, the planet Mars.

Sky at Night December 2020

Scruton Sky at Night – December 2020

28th November 2020

At 7 am on 12  December the thin waning crescent Moon will be low in the SE, with Venus to the lower left. This should be a spectacle as the Earth will be illuminating the night hemisphere of the Moon.

Sky at night - November 2020

Scruton Sky at Night – November 2020

28th October 2020

Darker skies mean better viewing in November. From the 5th onward, the constellation Orion is visible, low at first in the ESE sky but rising higher, ending November fairly high in the SE.

Scruton Sky at Night

28th September 2020

The planet Mars is very well placed for most of the month, high up in the evening sky to the south around midnight. 

Sky at Night

Scruton Sky at Night – September 2020

5th September 2020

Darkening nights now make for better viewing of the evening skies and it is interesting to note that there are proposals to designate parts of the Yorkshire Dales as a Dark Sky Reserve.

Comet NEOWISE

Scruton Sky at Night – August 2020

28th July 2020

Comet NEOWISE was visible low in the north sky during July, and with darker skies, will still be visible during the first weeks of August. Look out for it now – it won’t be back for 6,800 years!

Sky at Night

Sky at Night – July 2020

1st July 2020

The earth is at Aphelion at mid-day on 4 July, which means that it is at the furthest distance it can be from the Sun. On 6 July, the full moon passes just below Jupiter in the SSE sky, and with Saturn to the upper left, this makes an interesting sight.

Sky at Night

Sky at Night – June 2020

27th May 2020

There is no true night during June in Scruton; the sky is not black but rather a beautiful velvet deep blue, merging to turquoise on the northern horizon. Look out for Noctilucent Clouds in the hour before and after midnight, as they catch the light of the midnight sun.

Sky at night May 2020

Scruton Sky at Night – May 2020

27th April 2020

Twilight begins to persist all night with no truly dark nights until the end of July. Now is a good time to see Noctilucent Clouds. These are thin, high clouds of ice crystals that catch the light of the sun, which even at midnight is not far below the northern horizon.