Meteor showers, eclipses, full moons: All of the reasons to look up in 2022

The New Year is sure to be a treat for sky lovers with plenty of celestial events on the calendar.

Here are the top sky events of 2022 so you can get your binoculars and telescope ready.

There are 12 full moons in 2022, two of which qualify as giant moons.

Definitions of a supermoon can vary, but the term generally refers to a full moon that is brighter and closer to Earth than usual, and thus appears larger in the night sky.

Some astronomers say the phenomenon occurs when the moon is within 90% of its perigee – its closest approach to Earth in orbit. According to this definition, the June full moon as well as the July moon will be considered supermoon events.

Here is a list of lunar permanence for 2022, according to the farmers’ calendar:
  • January 17: Wolf Moon
  • February 16: Snow Moon
  • March 18: wormy moon
  • April 16: Pink Moon
  • May 16: Moonflower
  • June 14: Strawberry Moon
  • July 13: Pak Mun
  • August 11: Sturgeon Moon
  • September 10: Harvest Moon
  • October 9: Hunter’s Moon
  • November 8: Beaver Moon
  • December 7: Cold Moon
While these are the common names associated with the monthly moon, each name held diverse significance across Native American tribes.

Lunar and solar eclipse

There will be two total lunar eclipses and two partial solar eclipses in 2022, according to the old farmer’s calendar.
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A partial solar eclipse occurs when the moon passes in front of the sun, but blocks only some of its light. Be sure to wear the appropriate eclipse glasses to view the solar eclipse safely, as sunlight can damage the eyes.

A partial solar eclipse on April 30 can be seen by those in southern South America, the southeastern Pacific Ocean, and the Antarctic Peninsula. Another image will be shown on October 25 for those in Greenland, Iceland, Europe, Northeast Africa, the Middle East, West Asia, India and Western China. None of the partial solar eclipses will be visible from North America.

A lunar eclipse can only occur during a full moon when the Sun, Earth, and Moon are aligned and the Moon passes in the Earth’s shadow. Earth casts a shadow over the moon during an eclipse. The dark is the partial outer shadow, and the shadow is the full dark shadow.
This photo was taken by a photographer for ";  blood moon "  Over Los Angeles in January 2018.

When the full moon moves in the Earth’s shadow, it darkens, but it will not disappear. Sunlight passing through Earth’s atmosphere dramatically illuminates the moon, turning it red – which is why this is often referred to as a “blood moon.”

Depending on the weather in your area, it may be rusty, brick-colored, or blood red.

This happens because blue light undergoes stronger scattering in the atmosphere, so red light will be the most diffused color as sunlight passes through the atmosphere and is cast on the moon.

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The total lunar eclipse will be visible to those in Europe, Africa, South America, and North America (excluding Northwest Territories) between 9:31 PM ET on May 15 and 2:52 AM ET on May 16.

Another total lunar eclipse will also be visible to those in Asia, Australia, the Pacific, South America and North America on November 8 between 3:01 a.m. ET and 8:58 a.m. ET — but the moon will be set for those in the eastern regions of North America.

meteor showers

The new year begins with a quadruple meteor shower, which is expected to peak in the nighttime hours between January 2 and 3 for those in North America, according to the American Meteor Society.
The annual Perseid meteor shower in August is a real treat for sky watchers because it produces so many streaks of light through our atmosphere.

It’s the first of 12 meteors of the year—although the next shower, the Lyrid meteor, won’t reach its peak until April.

Here are the other showers to watch for in 2022:
  • Lired: April 21-22
  • ETA Aquarius: May 4-5
  • South Delta constellation: July 29-30
  • Alpha Capricorn: July 30-31
  • Perseids: August 11-12
  • Orionids: October 20-21
  • South Torres: 4-5 November
  • North Torres: November 11-12
  • Leonids: 17-18 November
  • Geminids: December 13-14
  • Ursids: December 21-22

If you live in an urban area, you may want to drive somewhere that is not filled with city lights that will obstruct your vision. If you can find an area unaffected by light pollution, meteors can be seen every two minutes from late evening until dawn.

Look for an open area with a wide view of the sky. Make sure you have a chair or blanket so you can look straight. And give your eyes about 20 to 30 minutes to adjust to the darkness – without looking at your phone – so that the meteors are easier to spot.

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