The New Year Promises Quite A Series Of Celestial Events
Here is a New Year's Resolution for you. "Look to the Heavens in 2022 for awe and inspiration"
That resolution has a double meaning, One is my recommendation for pursuing some divine inspiration in the New Year and we can and should talk more about that later. The other is a small but astronomical suggestion. If that sounds contradictory it really isn't. I refer to "astronomical" as in "events in space", not as in "taking up large amounts of space!" (Isn't language interesting!)
Space - The Final Frontier
First, the last two weeks of March -- Mars, Saturn, and Venus will appear extremely close to one another in the sky before sunrise. They’ll be so close that they’ll be in the same field of view of some telescopes and binoculars.
Next, the Lyrid meteor shower will happen April 21st and April 22nd, -- it will be the first meteor shower to peak in over three months, and will produce around 15 shooting stars per hour.
Next up, the Black Moon will occur on April 30th -- but there's a problem, you can’t actually see it. It’s the second new moon of the month, and though you can’t see it, it could make stargazing easier since there won’t be any light emitted from the moon.
Other astrological events to look forward to include:
A total lunar eclipse (May 15-16)
The first supermoon of 2022 (June 14th)
A Quintuple alignment with Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn aligning just before sunrise (June 24th)
The Perseid meteor shower (August 12th and 13th)
Another total lunar eclipse (November 8th)
Mars opposition (December 8th)*
The Geminid meteor shower (December 13th and 14th)
Line Up With The Martians
*I've never heard of Mars opposition, ( other than when the Martians invaded in Orson Wells' radio play in 1938. So here, according to NASA, is the explanation.
" Earth makes two trips around the sun in about the same amount of time that Mars takes to make one trip. So sometimes the two planets are on opposite sides of the sun, very far apart, and other times, Earth catches up with its neighbor and passes relatively close to it. During opposition, Mars and the sun are on directly opposite sides of Earth. From our perspective on our spinning world, Mars rises in the east just as the sun sets in the west. Then, after staying up in the sky the entire night, Mars sets in the west just as the sun rises in the east. Since Mars and the sun appear on opposite sides of the sky, we say that Mars is in "opposition."
The bottom line, mother nature is lining up quite a series of fascinating visual events in the year ahead so plan to enjoy those you can in your area.