Planet Mercury is not observable in August. Venus is very low in the E but will be difficult to observe by month’s end. Mars is very low in the W in the evening twilight but will be difficult to see. Jupiter can be seen in the SE after dark and
transits near 11pm. Sets in the west near 4am. Saturn rises in the ESE after 11pm and transits in the S near 4am.
The 2017 Perseid meteor shower will peak on Saturday, August 12. Although the shower peaks in the afternoon there will still be plenty of activity when darkness falls. The shower is on a Saturday so it is an ideal time for a good all night show. Although there will be a waning Gibbeous Moon rising at 11pm, and as the night goes on, the shower’s radiant climbs higher and higher and the number of meteors will increase.
On Monday, August 21 North America will be treated to a total eclipse of the sun. On the path of totality one can see one of nature’s most awe-inspiring sights, a total solar eclipse. The path of totality where the moon covers the sun and the sun’s tenuous atmosphere falls not far south of the Sunshine Coast. The eclipse path starts in Oregon and proceeds eastward to the East Coast of South Carolina. On the Sunshine Coast we will see a partial solar eclipse where the moon covers 85 – 90 per cent of the sun’s disk. The eclipse can be viewed from 9:10am until 11:35am with the maximum eclipse occurring at 10:20am. The Sunshine Coast Astronomy Club has obtained a permit from Sechelt council to set up along the Davis Bay sea wall. We will have solar glasses and hand-held solar viewers so that everyone may view the eclipse safely.
WARNING: You can only view the eclipse through solar glasses or hand-held solar viewers.