We present you the astronomy calendar for July 2020. Astronomy is the foundation upon which astrology can operate. Actually, astrology and astronomy were treated together, under the Latin name of astrologia, being separated only by the Western 17th century philosophy. One thing is sure: a good astrologer needs to study astronomy.
Sunday, July 5th: Full Moon
The full moon is the lunar phase when the Moon appears fully illuminated from Earth’s perspective. This occurs when Earth is located directly between the Sun and the Moon (more exactly, when the ecliptic longitudes of the Sun and Moon differ by 180°). This means that the lunar hemisphere facing Earth – the near side – is completely sunlit and appears as a circular disk, while the far side is dark.
July full moon was known by early Native American tribes as the Full Buck Moon, because this month is when the new antlers of buck deer push out from their foreheads in coatings of velvety fur. This moon has also been known as the Buffalo Moon, the Bull Moon, the Hot Sun Moon, the Hay Moon, the Elk Moon and the Thunder Moon.
Sunday, July 5th: Penumbral Lunar Eclipse
A penumbral lunar eclipse occurs when the Moon passes through the Earth’s partial shadow, or penumbra. During this type of eclipse, the Moon will darken slightly, but not completely. The eclipse will be visible throughout most of North America, South America, the eastern Pacific Ocean, the western Atlantic Ocean, and extreme western Africa.
This is the third lunar eclipse in 2020. The first one occurred on January 10th and the second (also a penumbral lunar eclipse) on June 5th. The fourth will occur on 29th/30th November.
Tuesday, July 14th: Jupiter at Opposition
Jupiter will be at its closest approach to Earth and its face will be fully illuminated by the Sun. It will be brighter than any other time of the year and will be visible all night long. This is the best time to view and photograph Jupiter and its moons. Jupiter comes to opposition about every 13 months. That’s how long Earth takes to travel once around the sun relative to Jupiter. As a result Jupiter’s opposition comes about a month later each year: 9th May 2018, 10th June 2019, 14th July 2020 etc.
Monday, July 20th: New Moon
The New Moon is when the Sun and Moon are aligned, with the Sun and Earth on opposite sides of the Moon. The new moon is the first lunar phase, when the Moon and Sun have the same ecliptic longitude. At this phase, the lunar disk is not visible to the unaided eye, except when silhouetted during a solar eclipse. This is the best time of the month to observe faint objects such as galaxies and star clusters because there is no moonlight to interfere.
Monday, July 20th: Saturn at Opposition
Saturn will be at its closest approach to Earth and its face will be fully illuminated by the Sun. It will be brighter than any other time of the year and will be visible all night long. This is the best time to view and photograph Saturn and its moons.
Wednesday, July 22nd: Mercury at Greatest Western Elongation
In astronomy, a planet’s elongation is the angular separation between the Sun and the planet, with Earth as the reference point. The planet Mercury reaches greatest western elongation of 20.1 degrees from the Sun. July 22nd is the best time to view Mercury since it will be at its highest point above the horizon in the morning sky. Look for the planet low in the eastern sky just before sunrise.
Tuesday, July 28th, Wednesday, July 29th: Delta Aquarids Meteor Shower
The Southern Delta Aquarids are a meteor shower visible from mid-July to mid-August each year. It peaks this year on the night of July 28 and morning of July 29. The Delta Aquarids is an average shower that can produce up to 20 meteors per hour at its peak. It is produced by debris left behind by comets Marsden and Kracht. Best viewing will be from a dark location after midnight. Meteors will radiate from the constellation Aquarius, but can appear anywhere in the sky.