Astronomy Events for April 2023

Astronomy Events for April 2023

WEST MICHIGAN — Clear skies will be pretty prominent headed into the second week of April. That will be helpful for those out there with a knack for sky watching.

On Thursday, April 6, the Pink Moon was really showing off. Jim Amsler from Muskegon shared his photos of the full moon. The full moon also goes by other names, like the Sprouting Grass Moon, the Growing Moon and the Egg Moon.

April Full Pink Moon in Muskegon

Jim Amsler, Muskegon

April Full Pink Moon in Muskegon

If you missed the full moon, don’t fret. There are plenty of other astronomical events to catch this month!

On April 11 Mercury will reach its greatest eastern elongation, which is 19.5 degrees from the Sun. It will shine bright, and the best time to view Mercury will be at it’s highest point above the horizon in the evening sky. Experts say to look for the planet low in the western sky just after sunset!

There is also a new moon this month, on April 20. On the 20, the moon will be on the same side of Earth as the Sun, so it won’t be visible at night. This will give the best viewing for faint galaxies and star clusters due to the lack of moonlight.

The moon is busy this month, because also on April 20 a Hybrid Solar Eclipse will occur. This happens when the moon is in range of the Earth to almost completely block the Sun. Unfortunately we won’t get a great view of this partial eclipse, because it will be occurring on the other side of the planet. The best eclipse viewing will be in the southern Indian Ocean, western Australia and southern Indonesia.

Where 2 upcoming solar eclipses can be seen in the US


And last but not least, April 22 & 23 the Lyrids Meteor Shower will take place. The Lyrids usually produces around 20 meteors per hour at it’s peak. The shower runs annualy from April 16 through April 25, but the peak this year will be the night of the 22 and the morning of the 23. The moon will set early in the evening, which will help bolster the illumination from the meteors. Your best viewing chances will be from a dark location after midnight.

Look up! Lyrid meteor shower to peak Tuesday night into Wednesday


Lyrid meteor shower sequence

Enjoy these events, and if you get any pictures, please feel free to send them to the FOX 17 Weather Team!