Welcome to your July 2018 Sky Watch! We’ll help you spot the best night sky events of June, including bright planets and stars, the full Moon, and celestial events.
Sky Watch July 2018
by Bob Berman, as featured in The 2018 Old Farmer’s Almanac
What’s in July’s night sky? Here are the highlights:
Venus grows brighter but sinks lower in the west. See some super-cool facts about Venus, our evening star.
Mercury: Low at twilight during the first half of the month, Mars is visible between Venus and the sunset point.
Aphelion: Earth reaches its annual far point from the Sun, aphelion, on the 6th of July. Learn more about aphelion!
The Moon: Our only satellite performs wonderfully close conjunctions this month, passing very near Mercury on the 14th, close to Venus on the 15th, above Jupiter on the 20th, close above Saturn on the 24th, and above Mars on the 27th.
Mars: The red planet is the headliner in July. On the 27th, it reaches its closest opposition since 2003. It is nearest on the 31st, at an unbelievable magnitude –2.8, which is brighter than Jupiter. But its low location, even at midnight, may make its fine 24-arcsecond disk smudgy through telescopes.
Click here for a free sky map to navigate the night sky!