astronomy pink supermoon

Credit: Petros Giannakouris, AP

Astronomy Events in April 2020

This April is going to be a great month for astronomy lovers as many amazing events will occur on the skies. Here is a sneak peek of what you can expect!

Pink Super Moon

On 8 April 2020, there will be the Pink Super moon. The Moon will be located on the opposite side of the Earth as the Sun and its face will be fully illuminated. This is also the third of four super moons for 2020. The Moon will be at its closest approach to the Earth and may look slightly larger and brighter than usual.

Lyrids Meteor Shower

On 22 April 2020, you can witness the Lyrids meteor shower. The Lyrids is an average shower, usually producing about 20 meteors per hour at its peak. It is produced by dust particles left behind by comet C/1861 G1 Thatcher, which was discovered in 1861. The shower runs annually from April 16-25. It peaks this year on the night of the 22nd and morning of the 23rd.

Planetary Conjunctions

Planetary Conjunctions will be apparent in the skies from 14 to 15 April 2020. In astronomy, a conjunction occurs when two astronomical objects or spacecraft have either the same right ascension or the same ecliptic longitude, usually as observed from Earth. They will be as follows:

The Moon in conjunction with Venus and Jupiter, with the Very Large Telescope in the foreground. Image © Y. Beletsky, 2009. April astronomy event
The Moon in conjunction with Venus and Jupiter, with the Very Large Telescope in the foreground. Image © Y. Beletsky, 2009.

14 April – Moon and Jupiter, Moon and Mars.

15 April – Moon and Saturn conjunction.

Bright Venus

Venus will be at its brightest on 28 April 2020. Venus circles our Sun and is the second closest planet to it, at a separation of around 108 million km (67 million miles). One day on Venus is as long as 243 Earth days and Venus also rotates in reverse, with its Sun rising in the west and setting in the east.

Asteroid Flyby

Safe Flyby of asteroid (52768) 1998 OR2 – the biggest asteroid due to fly by Earth this year – is coming closest on April 29, 2020. This space rock is probably at least a mile wide (1.8 km) and maybe 2 1/2 times that big (4.1 km).

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