Your February Astronomy Calendar is Here

Posted: February 5, 2023 2:30 am

It can be difficult to catch celestial sightings during the month of February. In addition to the cold temperatures making it less comfortable to be outside at night, the typical cloudy conditions of the month also hinder the ability to gaze up at the night skies. However, this February has a number of cool astronomy events that you will want to make an effort to see for yourself. Here is a look at the top astronomy happenings in the coming weeks.

Comet E3 ZTF – Throughout February

Comet E3 ZTF will continue to be the highlight of the skies after the sun goes down every February night. While the comet made its closest approach to Earth on February 1, it will stick close enough in the coming weeks for stargazers to see it across the northern sky. You will find Comet E3 located between the Big Digger and the Little Dipper.

The night of February 10 will provide another great chance to see it light up the sky if you missed the comet when it was closest to Earth. This is when the comet will pass close to Mars. This proximity will make it easier to locate since Mars is typically simple to spot in the sky.

The greenish-blue comet will start to lose its brightness by the end of February as it moves farther from the Earth. While you still may be able to locate it, you may need a telescope to see it streaking away from Earth.

Full Snow Moon – February 5

You will not have to wait long in February to see the first full moon. This will happen on Sunday, February 5 when what it is often referred to as the Snow Moon shines brightly in the night sky. The name comes from the fact that it is often the snowiest part of the winter season for many parts of North America. Other nicknames for this full moon include the Black Bear Moon, the Groundhog Moon, the Hungry Moon, and the Bald Eagle Moon.

This moon will mark the last full moon of the meteorological winter, the season that concludes at the end of February. For those going by the astronomical calendar, there will be one last full moon during winter on Monday, March 20.

Moon and Mars in Close Proximity – February 27

Two of the most recognized celestial objects will be located right next to each other on the night of Monday, February 27, wrapping up the astronomical events for the second month of the year. Stargazers will find the planet Mars appearing alongside the crescent moon in the western sky on this night. It will be easy to spot the duo because of their close proximity to each other.


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You will be able to locate this convergence during the first part of the night. Both objects will fall below the horizon by about 2 am local time, putting them out of sight.

If you head outside to try to find Mars and the moon early in the night, you may also find Venus and Jupiter appearing alongside each other. This pair will only be visible during the first 90 minutes or so of the night during the last few nights of February and for the first few nights of March.

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