From Geminid meteors to Saturn's cosmic pairing: Five celestial events to look forward in December

The Bubble Nebula in an image captured in February, 2016, by the Hubble Space Telescope's Wide Field Camera 3. The nebula is 7 light-years across, about one-and-a-half times the distance from our sun to its nearest stellar neighbor, Alpha Centauri, and resides 7,100 light-years from Earth in the constellation Cassiopeia. Reuters

December 2018 will be a busy month for skywatchers and astronomers, as several celestial events are waiting to appear in the skies to mesmerize space buffs.

Here is the list of five celestial events which you should not miss this December.

Saturn's cosmic pairing with the moon

Even though this cosmic pairing on December 08 will last only for 30 minutes, space experts are eagerly waiting to witness this mindblowing event. In this cosmic pairing, the hanging lunar crescent can be seen hanging very low in the western skies next to Saturn. It should be noted that this cosmic pairing will happen during the dusk time of December 08, and people can see this astounding sight using a telescope.

Geminid meteor shower

Geminid meteor shower usually happens between December 04 to17, and this year, the sky fire will peak on December 13, thus offering a cinematic viewing experience for space lovers. On December 13, our planet will enter the thickest part of the asteroid's debris field, and during this time, more than 60 shooting stars will enter the sky in the most beautiful manner.

To watch the Geminid meteor shower, spectators should ook toward the northeast from the late evening into the predawn hours. To watch the meteor shower in its full beauty, make sure that you are staying away from city lights, and find a suitable location in the dark countryside.

Mars' cosmic pairing with the moon

Another cosmic pairing which will happen this month will be between the moon and the Mars. The event is expected to happen on December 14, and during the night, our natural satellite will be seen pairing with the Red Planet, and the sight will be visible in the western direction.

Shortest and longest day on December 21

On December 21, the sun will be at its lowest point in the sky for the year, and as a result, people living in the north will witness the shortest day in the year, while people living in the south will experience the longest day.

It should be noted that the exact date and time of this winter or summer solstice slightly changes every year, but in all probabilities, it will happen on December 21 this time.

Ursid meteor shower

When compared to the Geminid meteor shower, Ursid meteor fall will not be that intense, but during the peak times, more than 30 shooting stars can be observed per hour. As per experts, this year's Ursid meteor shower will happen on December 22.

Related topics : Space