The 2020 WINTER STAR PARTY is scheduled for February 17th - 23rd.    REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN


SCAS JANUARY 2020 - Barb Yager

Lunar Timetable

First Quarter Moon Image
First Quarter Moon January 2nd @ 11:45 pm
Full Moon Image
Full Moon January 10th @ 2:21 pm
Last Quarter Moon Image
Last Quarter Moon January 17th @ 7:58 am pm
New Moon Image
New Moon January 24th @ 4:42 pm


The Quadrantids are active from December 27th to January 10th, 2020

The Quadrantids have the potential to be the strongest shower of the year but usually fall short due to the short length of maximum activity (6 hours) and the poor weather experienced during early January. The average hourly rates one can expect under dark skies is 25. These meteors usually lack persistent trains but often produce bright fireballs. Due to the high northerly declination (celestial latitude) these meteors are not well seen from the southern hemisphere.

Shower details - Radiant: 15:18 +49.5° - ZHR: 120 - Velocity: 26 miles/sec (medium - 42.2km/sec) - Parent Object: 2003 EH (Asteroid)

Next Peak - The Quadrantids will next peak on the Jan 3-4, 2020 night. On this night, the moon will be 58% full.


Here are some tips on how to maximize your time looking for meteors and fireballs during December:

  • Get out of the city to a place where city and artificial lights do not impede your viewing
  • If you are out viewing the shower during its peak, you will not need any special equipment. You should be able to see the shower with your naked eyes.
  • Carry a blanket or a comfortable chair with you - viewing meteors, just like any other kind of star gazing is a waiting game, and you need to be comfortable. Plus, you may not want to leave until you can't see the majestic celestial fireworks anymore.


Clear Sky Clock



Uranus, Neptune, Venus and Mercury in the western evening sky;
01- At dusk, Saturn descends onto the WSW horizon. Bright Venus glows in the SW in Capricornus.
02- First Quarter Moon occurs at 11:45 p.m. 
03/04- A few early Quadrantid Meteors may be visible by Midnight radiating from the NE.  
04- The Moon floats 6 degrees below blue-green Uranus in Aries, Ram overhead.
05- Earth is closest to the Sun (see the morning section).
07- By nightfall, the bright Moon glows in the east 3 degrees left of ruddy Aldebaran--the red-eye in Taurus, Bull. 
10- The WOLF MOON is full at 2:21 p.m. and rises in the east by sunset.
S. CROSS STAR PARTY, 7-9 p.m. Deering at Cutler, 7201 SW 167 St. Palmetto Bay 33157. 
11- At dusk, the bright Moon floats 0.2 degrees from the Beehive cluster and follows the Gemini Twins in the NE.
Rain or Shine bring your new and old telescope to the SCAS free TELESCOPE WORKSHOP 7:30-9 p.m. Bill Sadowski Park classroom SW 176 St./SW 79 Avenue, Palmetto Bay 33157.
17- S. Cross Astros host a free program 8 p.m. "TO CATCH A COMET" at FIU Physics lecture hall CP-145
The main campus, SW 109 Ave./SW 8 St.
24- NEW MOON occurs at 4:42 p.m.
25- At dusk, the young Moon lies 1 degree left of Mercury near the WSW horizon. Venus glows above them.
NEW MOON STAR PARTY 7:30 - 10 p.m.  Free.
D'Auria Observatory 23325 SW 217 Ave. Homestead 33031.
27- By nightfall, the crescent Moon floats below Venus. Binoculars reveal dark Earthshine on the lunar surface.
Neptune lies 0.2 degrees lower right of Venus, their closest appearance since 1984. 
31- The Moon hangs 5 degrees below Uranus at 10 p.m. 


On the NW horizon Cygnus, Swan becomes the Northern Cross within the Summer Triangle. The Royal Family: King Cepheus, Queen Cassiopeia, Andromeda and Perseus swing into the NW. Aries, Ram chases Pegasus, 
Winged Horse, westward. Cetus, Whale, dives toward the SW horizon. Overhead the delicate Seven Sisters (Pleiades cluster) lead Taurus, Bull toward the Zenith. Aldebaran (Bull's red eye) winks from the V-shaped Hyades cluster (Bull's face). Bright Capella guides Auriga, Charioteer, across the north. Gigantic Orion, Hunter, strides across the SE in pursuit of the Bull. The Great Orion Nebula glows from his sword. In the east Procyon, Little Dog, follows Orion. Brilliant blue Sirius sparkles in Orion's Big Dog in the SE. The Gemini Twins: Castor & Pollux climb higher in the NE, followed by the Beehive cluster in Cancer, Crab. Leo, Lion stares from the eastern horizon. The Big Dipper appears in the NE. 



Latest sunrises of the year. Earth will be closest to the Sun on 1/05.
Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn in the SE at dawn
03/04- QUADRANTID METEOR SHOWER occurs in the predawn with peak activity predicted to occur around 3 a.m. Earth cruises through the dust trail of a dead comet. From a dark sky site, 25-50 meteors and a few fireballs may be visible radiating from an area near the tip of the Big Dipper's handle in the NE during the predawn.  
Meteor showers are unpredictable and do not require equipment---only a lounge chair.
05- Earth will make its annual visit with the Sun when they are closest by 91.4 million miles at 3 a.m.  
11-15- The Latest sunrise occurs at 7:09 a.m. EST.
13- The waning Moon leads Leo, Lion westward.
17- Last Quarter Moon occurs at 7:58 a.m.
18- At dawn, Mars lies 4.8 degrees above bright Antares (red supergiant hundreds of times larger than our Sun). Antares is known as the `heart' beating in huge Scorpius in the SSE.  Aim optical equipment to compare the red tones of Mars and Antares.  Jupiter climbs above the SE horizon. 
22- Before sunrise, the old Moon leads Jupiter above the SE horizon.
31- By 6:30 a.m. Saturn appears on the ESE horizon. Miami sunrise now occurs at 7:05 a.m. EST.








The Big Dipper swings into the NW. Bright Arcturus sparkles in the west. Leo, Lion stalks the western horizon. Corvus the Crow lands on the SW horizon followed by Spica in Virgo. The stars of Libra twinkle in the SSW. Huge Scorpius crawls toward the south. The Sagittarian Teapot rises in the SE. The Milky Way arches from the Teapot to the Triangle. The delicate Corona Borealis (Northern Crown) shimmers overhead.  
 The 2020 WINTER STAR PARTY is scheduled for February 17th - 23rd.    REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN