The dragon eats the sun: January 6, 2019

On Sunday, January 6 there will be a partial solar eclipse as the moon passes in front of some of the sun. While Hong Kong will just miss out, this is very much a northeast Asian event, with those in northeast China, Mongolia, the Korean peninsula, and Japan able to witness the event. However, the point of maximum eclipse – when about 60 per cent of the sun is covered – will be visible only in Siberia.

A “blood moon” eclipse and “kissing planets”: January 20, 21 and 22, 2019

The precise lining-up of the sun, Earth, and moon will cause a total lunar eclipse on January 20/21 (depending on whether you view it from North and South America, or western Europe – it will not be visible in Hong Kong).

No matter where you are, Venus will be shining very brightly in the predawn sky in the early part of the year, and on January 22 it will appear very close to Jupiter.

A total eclipse at twilight: July 2, 2019

Millions saw the last total solar eclipse of the sun in August 2017 when the moon’s shadow crossed the United States. The same will not be true of the next one, on July 2, 2019.

Mercury’s “black drop” moment: November 11, 2019

Here is something very rare that is not going to happen again for a while. Once every 13 years, inner planet Mercury appears to cross the disk of the sun. The event will happen on November 11; the next time will be in 2032.

Eta Aquarid meteor shower—May 6

While both the Perseid and Geminid meteor showers will have to contend with a bright moon washing out some of their shooting stars, a dark new moon will make the Eta Aquarids the best meteor shower of 2019.

Crescent moon meets Venus—December 28

The year closes with an eye-catching close pairing between the waxing crescent moon and the planet known as the evening star. Even urban sky-watchers under light-polluted skies will be able to see the pretty pair hanging low in the southwestern sky at dusk.

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