Three astronomical events light up the Northeast Ohio sky Friday night

Posted at 5:45 AM, Feb 10, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-10 06:58:41-05

Look up! A triple treat will consume the night sky Friday.

The first course in the feast of the night, “We’ve got a full moon and this particular moon would include a lunar eclipse, a penumbral lunar eclipse,” said Jason Davis, the Planetarium Manager for the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.

A full “snow” moon, February’s full moon, named appropriately, will play a part in a “penumbral” lunar eclipse, “Sometimes everything lines up great and you get a nice, bright, total lunar-eclipse, that’s not what’s happening this time, this time the moon’s just sort of skating through the brighter of the shadows of the earth, the penumbral shadow,” explained Davis.

This will be visible to all, pending no clouds, beginning at 5:34p.m. and will peak at 7:43p.m.

But wait, there’s more!

“And then if you can find yourself a pair of binoculars or telescopes, you’ve got a crack at a comet in the eastern sky as well,” said Davis.

Comet 45P will be skating by at 7.4 million miles from earth (relatively close actually) and will be seen best with binoculars, away from city lights at around 3a.m.

“You get a crack at it about every five and a half years, but most of the appearances would be very, very faint, you would need a large telescope to see them, but this tends to be one of the brighter ones and that’s a coincidence,” said Davis.

The comet is something you won’t want to miss because the next time you’ll able to grab a glimpse of is in another five years, 2022.