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Astronomical Events August 2020


Plan ahead for these astronomical events happening in August 2020! With the exit of comet NEOWISE a meteor shower peaks on the night of August 11 for more opportunities to capture streaks of celestial rocks in the night sky. 

Check off your accessory list with our top ten guide recommended by OPT experts. Contact us if you have any questions about equipment.

Read on to learn what's in the sky August 2020. Download your FREE calendars here and save the date!


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August 3 - Full Moon

This full Moon was known by some early Native American tribes as the Sturgeon Moon because the large sturgeon fish of the Great Lakes and other major lakes were more easily caught at this time of year. This Moon has also been known as the Green Corn Moon and the Grain Moon.

August 11, 12 - Perseids Meteor Shower

The Perseids meteor shower will produce up to 60 meteors per hour at its peak! Every year, the shower runs from July 17 to August 24. This year the meteor shower will peak on the night of the 11th into the early morning of the 12th. Find a dark location for the best viewing after midnight.

August 13 - Venus 

The planet Venus will reach greatest western elongation. This is the best time to view Venus because it will be at its highest point in the morning sky. Look for the bright planet in the eastern sky before sunrise. Check out our guide here to learn more on how to see planets with a telescope!

August 19 - New Moon

This is the best time of the month to observe faint objects such as galaxies and star clusters because there is no moonlight to interfere. 


astronomical events august 2020

Lyra Constellation 

  • Eclipsing stars, Beta Lyrae & RR Lyrae
  • Ring Nebula
  • Messier 56
  • NGC 6791: One of the oldest clusters in our galaxy!

Sagitta Constellation 

  • Globular cluster Messier 71
  • The Necklace Nebula

Aquila Constellation 

  • The Glowing Eye Nebula (NGC 6751) 
  • NGC 6709 and NGC 6755
  • Globular Cluster NGC 6760

Southern Hemisphere Constellations in August 2020

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Scutum Constellation

  • Wild Duck Cluster (Messier 11)
  • Messier 26

Sagittarius Constellation

  • Lagoon Nebula (Messier 8)
  • Omega Nebula (Messier 17)
  • Trifid Nebula (Messier 20)
  • The globular clusters Messier 22, Messier 28, Messier 54 (extragalactic cluster)
  • Sagittarius Star Cloud (Messier 24)
  • Messier 55, Messier 69, Messier 70 and Messier 75
  • The open clusters Messier 18, Messier 21, Messier 23 and Messier 25

Corona Australis Constellation

  • Corona Australis Molecular Cloud
  • NGC 6729
  • IC 4812
  • NGC 6726/6727

Telescopium Constellation

  • Elliptical galaxy NGC 6868
  • NGC 6845
  • NGC 6584
  • elliptical galaxy IC 4889
  • planetary nebula IC 4699

Pavo Constellation

  • NGC 6752, the third brightest globular cluster in the sky
  • NGC 6744
  • Interacting galaxies - NGC 6872 (Condor Galaxy, one of the largest spiral galaxies known) and IC 4970
  • Triplet of colliding galaxies designated as IC 4686, IC 4687 and IC 4689

Curious what astronomical events are happening the rest of 2020? Check out our astronomical events calendar for all of 2020! If you're looking to get started in astrophotography, check out our beginner's guide here. Clear skies! 🔭✨

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