Main astronomical events of April 2024

The periodic comet Pons-Brooks, which returned to the Sun after a 70-year absence, will reign in the evening sky for almost the entire month. On April 10, the crescent of the new moon will be near it, and three days later it will approach 3° to Jupiter. On April 21, the “tailed guest” will pass perihelion and at about the same time will reach maximum brightness (about the 4th magnitude), and soon after that it will cease to be visible in our latitudes.

Unfortunately, the central event of this spring — the total solar eclipse on April 8 — is observable only in the Western Hemisphere and will not be visible in Ukraine even as a partial one. On April 11, before sunrise, Mars will conjunct Saturn at 36° from it. The planets will have almost the same brilliance, it is quite difficult to see them with the naked eye against the background of morning twilight. On April 20, a fairly close conjunction of Jupiter with Uranus is expected in the evening sky. On the night of April 21, it will be possible to observe the Moon covering the 4th magnitude star β Virgo from all over Ukraine, and on the penultimate day of the month, Mars will pass less than three angular minutes from Neptune, which in a telescope will look like its weak satellite.

April 2

  • The Moon is in the last quarter phase

April 6

  • The Moon is 3° south of Mars (1,2ᵐ)
  • The Moon is 4° south of Saturn (1.1ᵐ)

April 7

  • The Moon is at perigee, 358848 km from the center of the Earth

April 8

  • New moon. Total solar eclipse (not visible in Ukraine)

April 10

  • The Moon is 3° north of comet Pons-Brooks (4.5ᵐ)
  • The Moon is 3° north of Jupiter (-2.0ᵐ)
  • The Moon is 3° north of Uranus (5.8ᵐ)

April 11

  • Mars (1,2ᵐ) is 0.5° north of Saturn (1.1ᵐ)

April 12

  • Mercury is at inferior conjunction with the Sun

April 13

  • Comet Pons-Brooks is 3° from Jupiter

April 15

  • The Moon is in the phase of the first quarter
  • The Moon is 2° south of Pollux (α Gemini, 1,2ᵐ)

April 18

  • The Moon is 3° north of Regulus (α Leo, 1.3ᵐ)

April 20

  • Jupiter (-2,0ᵐ) is 0.5° south of Uranus (5.8ᵐ)
  • The Moon is at apogee, 405625 km from the center of the Earth

April 21

  • The Moon covers the star β Virgo (3,6ᵐ)
  • Comet Pons-Brooks is at perihelion, 0.781 AU (117 million km) from the Sun
  • Maximum activity of the Lyrid meteor shower (up to 20 meteors per hour)

April 23

  • Full moon
  • The Moon is 1° north of Spica (α Virgo, 1.0ᵐ)

April 26

  • The Moon is 0.5° south of Antares (α Scorpio, 1.0ᵐ)

April 29

  • Mars (1,1ᵐ) is 0.1° south of Neptune (7.9ᵐ)

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