Here’s a quick look at what’s going on in the sky during the month of June, 2011:
June 1 — New Moon, 5:03 p.m. The Moon is not illuminated by direct sunlight.
June 1 — Partial Eclipse of the Sun. This second solar eclipse of the year will only be visible in varying extent across much of the Arctic. Northern Alaska, northern Canada, Greenland, Iceland, and portions of northeastern Asia are in line to see a relatively minor eclipse. Greatest eclipse, with 60.2 percent of the Sun’s diameter obscured, will be seen in northwestern Russia, near Cheshskaya Bay.
June 7 — Aretids meteor shower. Near Aries, shortly before dawn.
June 8 — First Quarter Moon, 10:11 p.m. One-half of the Moon appears illuminated by direct sunlight while the illuminated part is increasing.
June 9 — Zeta Perseids meteor shower. Daylight shower. Not visible.
June 12 — Moon at perigee (its closest point to the Earth).
June 14 — Earliest sunrise of the year at latitude 40° N.
June 15 — Full Strawberry Moon, 4:14 p.m. The visible Moon is fully illuminated by direct sunlight. Though the Moon is only technically in this phase for a few seconds, it is considered “full” for the entire day of the event, and appears full for three days.
June 15 — Total Eclipse of the Moon. The prime viewing region for this first total lunar eclipse of 2011 encompasses much of Africa, southern Asia, and western Australia. Observers in western Europe will see the Moon rise already in total eclipse; eastern Australia and New Zealand will see the Moon set in totality. The Moon will pass almost directly through the center of the Earth’s shadow, and totality will last unusually long; 1 hour 41 minutes. At mid-eclipse, the umbral magnitude will reach 1.705, leading to a potentially dark total phase.
June 16 — Lyrids metoer shower. A weak shower emanating from Lyra, near midnight.
June 21 — Summer Solstice, 1:16 p.m. The Sun reaches its farthest point north of the celestial equator.
June 23 — Last Quarter Moon, 7:48 a.m. One-half of the Moon appears illuminated by direct sunlight while the illuminated part is decreasing.
June 24 — Moon at apogee (its farthest point from the Earth).
June 27 — BoÃ¶tids meteor shower. This unpredictable shower peaks during daylight hours, but may still be seen near sunset, directly overhead.
June 28 — Beta Taurids meteor shower. Daylight shower. Not visible.