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Frolicking planets this week in the sky include partial eclipse over Australia, waning moon canoodling with Venus, and fading Lyrid meteor shower.

Moon, Venus Once Again Head to Shmoopy Town Under Fading Lyrid Meteors

ICTMN Staff
4/26/14

You know those couples who cannot stop canoodling in public? Well, that holds for the sky too. No end of times have we alerted the interested sky watcher to an impending rendezvous between the Moon and Venus, and tonight is no exception.

The two have been hovering together in the sky for a couple of days now, as the moon wanes into a slimmer and slimmer crescent. Just before sunrise on Sunday, the two will bid adieu for now, as the “very old moon” disappears into the darkness of new, according to EarthSky.org.

“As seen from mid-northern latitudes, Venus is rising in the east roughly one-and-one-half hours before sunrise on April 27,” reports Earthsky.org. “At more northerly latitudes, Venus rises closer to sunrise; at more southerly latitudes, Venus rises farther from sunrise. At temperate latitudes in the Southern Hemisphere, for instance, Venus rises well over three hours before sunrise.”

That moon will turn new on Tuesday at 2:14 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time, according to Sky and Telescope. Down Under it will treat sky aficionados to a partial eclipse of the sun in Australia, while the penguins in Antarctica will see an annular solar eclipse—briefly, for just 49 seconds—on the horizon at sunrise.

Between now and then there is still time to catch the last of the Lyrid meteor shower, which peaked on Earth Day but whose dancing stars are still visible for the next few days. Those who missed the Lyrids, no worries: The Eta Aquarids aren’t far behind, according to Astronomy magazine. 

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