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SOLAR SHOCKWAVE from The Sun Impacts Earth creates Very Deep M8.2 Earthquake hits Fiji region, two M6+ aftershocks
A solar shockwave impacted Earth at 04:25;38 UT on 08/19/18 triggering a Mega Quake that was over 560km deep.  The shockwave came from a series of large coronal holes that were Earth-facing for the last several days.

As the shockwave sped toward Earth at over 1 million MPH+ it picked up more speed with a burst of 1,829,814 MPH









A very strong earthquake registered by the USGS as M8.2 hit Fiji region at 00:19 UTC (12:19 local time) on August 19, 2018. The agency is reporting a depth of 563.4 km (350 miles). EMSC is reporting M8.2 at a depth of 558 km (346 miles). This earthquake can have a low humanitarian impact based on the magnitude and the affected population and their vulnerability. According to the USGS, the epicenter was located 272.5 km (169.3 miles) E of Levuka (population 8 360), 330.6 km (205.4 miles) SE of Labasa (population 27 949), and 364.8 km (226.7 miles) E of…

Night sky guide for January 2018 - Supermoon, Quadrantids, Blue Moon, Total Lunar Eclipse

Night sky guide for January 2018 -  Supermoon, Quadrantids, Blue Moon, Total Lunar Eclipse

A Full Moon Supermoon will take place early January 2 (UTC), Earth will reach perihelion (closest point to the Sun) on January 3 and Quadrantid meteor shower will reach its peak on January 4th.
The best time of the month to observe faint objects such as galaxies and star clusters because there is no moonlight to interfere - New Moon - will be on the night of January 17. Over coming days, the Moon will rise and set an hour later each day, becoming visible in the late afternoon and dusk sky as a waxing crescent which sets soon after the Sun.
The Moon will be at its closest approach to the Earth at 13:28 UTC on January 31- this will be a Full Moon, Supermoon, and Blue Moon. Three minutes later, at 13:31 UTC, a total lunar eclipse will take place.
  • January 1 - C/2016 R2 (PANSTARRS) reaches it brightest. Comet C/2016 R2 (PANSTARRS) is forecast to reach its brightest, at around mag 11.3. It will lie at a distance of 2.93 AU from the Sun, and at a distance of 2.06 AU from the Earth.
  • January 2 - M41 well placed for observation. The open star cluster M41 (NGC 2287) in Canis Major will be well placed for observation. It will reach its highest point in the sky at around midnight local time. At a declination of -20°43', it is easiest to see from the southern hemisphere but cannot be seen from latitudes much north of 49°N.
  • January 2 - Mercury at greatest elongation west - 00:40 UTC. Mercury will be well placed for observation in the dawn sky, shining brightly at mag -0.4. Mercury's orbit lies closer to the Sun than the Earth's, meaning that it always appears close to the Sun and is very difficult to observe most of the time. It is observable only for a few days each time it reaches greatest separation from the Sun – moments referred to as greatest elongation. These apparitions take place alternately in the morning and evening skies, depending whether Mercury lies to the east of the Sun or to the west. When it lies to the east, it rises and sets a short time after the Sun and is visible in early evening twilight. When it lies to the west of the Sun, it rises and sets a short time before the Sun and is visible shortly before sunrise. On this occasion, it lies 22° to the Sun's west.
  • January 2 - Full Moon, Supermoon - 02:25 UTC. At this time in its monthly cycle of phases, the Moon lies almost directly opposite the Sun in the sky, placing it high above the horizon for much of the night. This month's full moon will take place unusually close to the time of the month when the Moon also makes its closest approach to the Earth – called its perigee. This means the Moon will appear slightly larger and brighter than at other times - Supermoon, though any difference is imperceptible to the unaided eye. Perigee full moons such as this occur roughly once every 13 months. The sequence of full moons through the year are often assigned names according to the seasons in which they fall. Over the nights following January 2, the Moon will rise around an hour later each day, becoming prominent later in the night. Within a few days, it will only be visible in the pre-dawn and early-morning sky. By the time it reaches last quarter, a week after full moon, it will rise at around midnight and set at around noon. At the exact moment when the Moon reaches full phase, it will lie at a declination of +20°04' in the constellation Gemini, and so will appear highest in the northern hemisphere. It will be visible from all latitudes south of 59°S. Its distance from the Earth will be 356 000 km (221 208 miles). This full moon was known by early Native American tribes as the Full Wolf Moon because this was the time of year when hungry wolf packs howled outside their camps. This moon has also been know as the Old Moon and the Moon After Yule. This is also the first of two supermoons for 2018. The Moon will be at its closest approach to the Earth and may look slightly larger and brighter than usual.
Video courtesy NASA. Note: Full Moon phase will be reached 02:25 UTC.
  • January 2 - Mercury at greatest brightness - 14:31 UTC. Mercury will be well placed for observation in the dawn sky, shining brightly at mag -0.4. Mercury's orbit lies closer to the Sun than the Earth's, meaning that it always appears close to the Sun and is very difficult to observe most of the time. It is observable only for a few days each time it reaches greatest separation from the Sun – moments referred to as greatest elongation.
  • January 3 - Asteroid 8 Flora at opposition - 23:14 UTC. Asteroid 8 Flora will be well placed for observation, lying in the constellation Gemini, well above the horizon for much of the night. Regardless of your location on the Earth, 8 Flora will reach its highest point in the sky at around midnight local time.
  • January 3 - Earth at perihelion - 05:35 UTC. The Earth's annual orbit around the solar system will carry it to its closest point to the Sun, at a distance of 0.98 AU. The Earth's distance from the Sun varies by around 3% over the course of the year because its orbit is slightly oval-shaped, following a path called an ellipse. In practice, this variation is rather slight, however, because the Earth's orbit is very nearly circular. The Earth completes one revolution around this oval-shaped orbit each year, and so it makes its closest approach to the Sun on roughly the same day every year. In 2018, this falls on January 3. Technically speaking, this marks the moment when the Sun appears larger in the sky than at any other time of year, and when the Earth receives the most radiation from it. In practice, however, a 3% difference in the Earth's distance from the Sun is barely noticeable. Annual changes in our weather, for example between the summer and winter, are caused entirely by the tilt of the Earth's axis of rotation, rather than by any change in its distance from the Sun.
  • January 4 - Quadrantid meteor showerThe Quadrantid meteor shower will reach its maximum rate of activity on January 4, 2018, but some shooting stars associated with the shower are expected to be visible each night from January 1 to January 6. The parent body responsible for creating the Quadrantid shower has been tentatively identified as 2003 EH1. The maximum rate of meteors expected to be visible is around 80 per hour (ZHR). However, this assumes a perfectly dark sky and that the radiant of the meteor shower is directly overhead. In practice, the number of meteors you are likely to see is lower than this. The Moon will be 17 days old at the time of peak activity, and being so close to Full Moon will severely limit the observations that will be possible.
  • January 6 - C/2017 T1 (Heinze) reaches its brightest. Comet C/2017 T1 (Heinze) is forecast to reach its brightest, at around mag 7.8. It will lie at a distance of 1.13 AU from the Sun, and at a distance of 0.22 AU from the Earth.
  • January 7 - Close approach of Jupiter and Mars - 00:23 UTC. Jupiter and Mars will make a close approach, passing within 0°12' of each other. Jupiter will be at mag -1.9, and Mars at mag 1.4, both in the constellation Libra. The pair will be close enough to fit within the field of view of a telescope, but will also be visible to the naked eye or through a pair of binoculars. At around the same time, the two objects will also share the same right ascension – called a conjunction.
  • January 7 - NGC 2403 well placed for observation. NGC 2403, a spiral galaxy in Camelopardalis will be well placed for observation. It will reach its highest point in the sky at around midnight local time. At a declination of +65°35', it is easiest to see from the northern hemisphere but cannot be seen from latitudes much south of 4°S. At magnitude 8.4, NGC2403 is quite faint, and certainly not visible to the naked eye, but can be viewed through a pair of binoculars or a small telescope.
  • January 9 - Venus at superior solar conjunction - 06:22 UTC. Venus will pass very close to the Sun in the sky as its orbit carries it around the far side of the solar system from the Earth. This occurs once in every synodic cycle of the planet (584 days), and marks the end of Venus's apparition in the morning sky and its transition to become an evening object over the next few weeks. At closest approach, Venus will appear at a separation of only 0°46' from the Sun, making it totally unobservable for several weeks while it is lost in the Sun's glare.
  • January 9 - Pluto at solar conjunction - 09:26 UTC. Pluto will pass very close to the Sun in the sky as its orbit carries it around the far side of the solar system from the Earth. At closest approach, Pluto will appear at a separation of only 0°26' from the Sun, making it totally unobservable for several weeks while it is lost in the Sun's glare. At around the same time, Pluto will also be at its most distant from the Earth – receding to a distance of 34.47 AU – since the two planets will lie on opposite sides of the solar system. If Pluto could be observed at this time, it would appear at its smallest and faintest on account of its large distance. It would measure 0.0 arcsec in diameter. Over following weeks and months, Pluto will re-emerge to the west of the Sun, gradually becoming visible for ever-longer periods in the pre-dawn sky. After around six months, it will reach opposition, when it will be visible for virtually the whole night.
  • January 11 - Conjunction of the Moon and Jupiter - 05:59 UTC. The Moon and Jupiter will share the same right ascension, with the Moon passing 4°20' to the north of Jupiter. The Moon will be 24 days old. At around the same time, the two objects will also make a close approach, technically called an appulse. The Moon will be at mag -11.2, and Jupiter at mag -1.9, both in the constellation Libra. The pair will be too widely separated to fit within the field of view of a telescope but will be visible to the naked eye or through a pair of binoculars.
  • January 11 - Close approach of the Moon and Jupiter - 08:26 UTC. The Moon and Jupiter will make a close approach, passing within 4°09' of each other. The Moon will be 24 days old. The Moon will be at mag -11.2, and Jupiter at mag -1.9, both in the constellation Libra. The pair will be too widely separated to fit within the field of view of a telescope but will be visible to the naked eye or through a pair of binoculars. At around the same time, the two objects will also share the same right ascension – called a conjunction.
  • January 11 - Conjunction of the Moon and Mars - 10:04 UTC. The Moon and Mars will share the same right ascension, with the Moon passing 4°33' to the north of Mars. The Moon will be 24 days old. At around the same time, the two objects will also make a close approach, technically called an appulse. The Moon will be at mag -11.2, and Mars at mag 1.4, both in the constellation Libra. The pair will be too widely separated to fit within the field of view of a telescope but will be visible to the naked eye or through a pair of binoculars.
  • January 11 - Close approach of the Moon and Mars - 12:40 UTC. The Moon and Mars will make a close approach, passing within 4°23' of each other. The Moon will be 24 days old. The Moon will be at mag -11.1, and Mars at mag 1.4, both in the constellation Libra. The pair will be too widely separated to fit within the field of view of a telescope but will be visible to the naked eye or through a pair of binoculars. At around the same time, the two objects will also share the same right ascension – called a conjunction.
  • January 13 - Conjunction of Mercury and Saturn - 06:47 UTC. Mercury and Saturn will share the same right ascension, with Mercury passing 0°38' to the south of Saturn. Mercury will be at mag -0.3, and Saturn at mag 0.4, both in the constellation Sagittarius. The pair will be a little too widely separated to fit comfortably within the field of view of a telescope but will be visible to the naked eye or through a pair of binoculars.
  • January 14 - M47 well placed for observation. The open star cluster M47 (NGC 2422) in Puppis will be well placed for observation. It will reach its highest point in the sky at around midnight local time. At a declination of -14°30', it is easiest to see from the southern hemisphere; it can be seen at latitudes between 55°N and 84°S. At magnitude 4.4, M47 is tricky to make out with the naked eye except from a dark site but is visible through a pair of binoculars or a small telescope.
  • January 14 - NGC 2403 well placed for observation. NGC 2403, a spiral galaxy in Camelopardalis will be well placed for observation. It will reach its highest point in the sky at around midnight local time. At a declination of +65°35', it is easiest to see from the northern hemisphere but cannot be seen from latitudes much south of 4°S. At magnitude 8.4, NGC2403 is quite faint, and certainly not visible to the naked eye, but can be viewed through a pair of binoculars or a small telescope.
  • January 15 - Conjunction of the Moon and Saturn - 01:58 UTC. The Moon and Saturn will share the same right ascension, with the Moon passing 2°37' to the north of Saturn. The Moon will be 28 days old. The Moon will be at mag -9.0, and Saturn at mag 0.4, both in the constellation Sagittarius. The pair will be too widely separated to fit within the field of view of a telescope but will be visible to the naked eye or through a pair of binoculars.
  • January 15 - Conjunction of the Moon and Mercury -07:24 UTC. The Moon and Mercury will share the same right ascension, with the Moon passing 3°21' to the north of Mercury. The Moon will be 28 days old. The Moon will be at mag -8.7, and Mercury at mag -0.3, both in the constellation Sagittarius. The pair will be too widely separated to fit within the field of view of a telescope, but will be visible to the naked eye or through a pair of binoculars.
  • January 16 - NGC 2451 well placed for observation. Across much of the world, the open star cluster NGC 2451 in Puppis will be well placed for observation. It will reach its highest point in the sky at around midnight local time. At a declination of -37°58', it is easiest to see from the southern hemisphere but cannot be seen from latitudes much north of 32°N. At magnitude 2.8, NGC2451 is visible to the naked eye, but best viewed through a pair of binoculars.
  • January 17 - New Moon - 02:19 UTC. The Moon will pass close to the Sun and become lost in the Sun's glare for a few days. 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. Over coming days, the Moon will rise and set an hour later each day, becoming visible in the late afternoon and dusk sky as a waxing crescent which sets soon after the Sun. By first quarter, in a week's time, it will be visible until around midnight.
  • January 20 - NGC 2516 well placed for observation. Across much of the world, the open star cluster NGC 2516 in Volans will be well placed for observation. It will reach its highest point in the sky at around midnight local time. At a declination of -60°52', it is easiest to see from the southern hemisphere but cannot be seen from latitudes much north of 9°N. At magnitude 3.8, NGC2516 is tricky to make out with the naked eye except from a dark site but is visible through a pair of binoculars or a small telescope.
  • January 23 - NGC 2547 well placed for observation. Across much of the world, the open star cluster NGC 2547 in Vela will be well placed for observation. It will reach its highest point in the sky at around midnight local time. At a declination of -49°16', it is easiest to see from the southern hemisphere but cannot be seen from latitudes much north of 20°N. At magnitude 4.7, NGC2547 is too faint to be seen with the naked eye from any but the very darkest sites but is visible through a pair of binoculars or a small telescope.
  • January 23 - 74P/Smirnova-Chernykh at perihelion. Comet 74P/Smirnova-Chernykh will make its closest approach to the Sun, at a distance of 3.54 AU.
  • January 24 - Conjunction of Mercury and Pluto - 17:07 UTC. Mercury and Pluto will share the same right ascension, with Mercury passing 1°32' to the south of Pluto. Mercury will be at mag -0.4, and Pluto at mag 14.6, both in the constellation Sagittarius. The pair will be too widely separated to fit within the field of view of a telescope but will be visible through a pair of binoculars.
  • January 28 - 185P/Petriew at perihelion. Comet 185P/Petriew will make its closest approach to the Sun, at a distance of 0.93 AU.
  • January 30 - M44 well placed for observation. The Beehive open star cluster (M44, NGC 2632, also known as Praesepe) will be well placed for observation. It will reach its highest point in the sky at around midnight local time. At a declination of +19°58', it is easiest to see from the northern hemisphere; it can be seen at latitudes between 89°N and 50°S. At magnitude 3.1, M44 is tricky to make out with the naked eye except from a dark site but is visible through a pair of binoculars or a small telescope.
  • January 30 - IC2391 well placed for observation. Across much of the world, the Omicron Velorum open star cluster (IC 2391) in Vela will be well placed for observation. It will reach its highest point in the sky at around midnight local time. At a declination of -53°04', it is easiest to see from the southern hemisphere but cannot be seen from latitudes much north of 16°N. At magnitude 2.5, IC2391 is visible to the naked eye, but best viewed through a pair of binoculars.
  • January 31 - IC2395 well placed for observation. Across much of the world, the open star cluster IC 2395 in Vela will be well placed for observation. It will reach its highest point in the sky at around midnight local time. At a declination of -48°12', it is easiest to see from the southern hemisphere but cannot be seen from latitudes much north of 21°N. At magnitude 4.6, IC2395 is too faint to be seen with the naked eye from any but the very darkest sites but is visible through a pair of binoculars or a small telescope.
  • January 31 - 185P/Petriew reaches its brightest. Comet 185P/Petriew is forecast to reach its brightest, at around mag 10.8. It will lie at a distance of 0.93 AU from the Sun, and at a distance of 1.36 AU from the Earth.
  • January 31 - Dwarf planet Ceres at opposition - 06:21 UTC. Dwarf Planet Ceres will be well placed for observation, lying in the constellation Cancer, well above the horizon for much of the night. Regardless of your location on the Earth, Ceres will reach its highest point in the sky at around midnight local time.
  • January 31 - Full Moon, Supermoon, Blue Moon - 13:28 UTC. The Moon will be located on the opposite side of the Earth as the Sun and its face will be will be fully illuminated. Since this is the second full moon in the same month, it is sometimes referred to as a blue moon. This is also the last of two supermoons for 2018. The Moon will be at its closest approach to the Earth and may look slightly larger and brighter than usual.
Total Lunar Eclipse January 31, 2018
  • January 31 - Total lunar eclipse - 13:31 UTC. During this type of eclipse, the Moon will gradually get darker and then take on a rusty or blood red color. The eclipse will be visible throughout most of western North America, eastern Asia, Australia, and the Pacific Ocean.
Video courtesy the Hubble Space Telescope


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