We had record levels in the Lehigh Valley over the weekend.
But this cold air also causes the best star observation conditions we’ve had in months.
Cold air is often dry air and our air is currently super dry. When the air is so dry, the sky looks bluer during the day.
Dry air also makes stars and planets look more vibrant at night: they do appear.
This is because light moves more easily through dry air.
Light is harder to travel in humid air, and because it has been humid for most of the summer, these beautiful night skies have long since come.
For the last whole summer day the sunset is exactly at 19:00. By 19:30 it will be quite dark. Sign out to see:
Jupiter and Saturn it will be in the southern sky and they will be right next to each other. They will be a little low in the sky. They set (sink below the horizon) around 1 o’clock in the morning.
Mars is spectacular. It is the largest object in the night sky and is bright. You will surely notice its orange color. It is high in the southern sky.
The International Space Station will pass over us around 7:31 p.m. in four minutes on Monday night. It will first appear in the western sky, near where the sun sets. It will then travel low in the sky to the northeast horizon. But before it reaches the northeast horizon, it will suddenly disappear!
The International Space Station will look like an airplane flying over the sky. There will be a smooth, even movement. You will find that you have seen it if it disappears before it reaches the horizon.
This is because the International Space Station is facing the darkness of the Earth’s shadow. First of all, we see the space station because it reflects sunlight.
If you want to see the space station, leave around 7:20 to be safe. The exact time it appears in your sky will vary by a minute or two from 19:31. Take the right time for your community here.
The moon is in the night sky just at sunset in just a few hours. Monday night will settle at 22:00, leaving a very dark sky until the end of the night.
If you see the moon, it will be crescent-shaped because we just had a new moon last week. The moon is half full later this week.
Watch the International Space Station fly over you on Monday night.