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10 Astronomical Events That Will Happen In Your Lifetime

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11:05   |   Apr 24, 2017

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10 Astronomical Events That Will Happen In Your Lifetime
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  • 10 Astronomical Events That Will Happen In Your Lifetime
  • Number 10 Halley’s Comet
  • Halley’s comet was named after astronomer Edmond Halley, who calculated its period of
  • orbit, it is the only known short-period comet that is regularly visible to the naked eye
  • from Earth.
  • It is seen from Earth every 75-76 years and so, technically, some lucky humans will get
  • to see it twice in their lifetime.
  • The first Halley's Comet witnessed in the space age – in 1986 – saw several spacecraft
  • approach its vicinity to establish its composition. High-powered telescopes also observed the
  • comet as it swung by Earth.
  • This fly-by provided the first observational data on the structure of a comet's nucleus,
  • the mechanism of comets, and tail formation.
  • But for those of you who missed it in 1986, don’t worry because it’ll next appear
  • in 2061.
  • In the meantime you can see its remnants every year. The Orionid meteor shower, which is
  • spawned by Halley's fragments, occurs annually in October.
  • Number 9 Near Earth Asteroid Flyby
  • On April 13th, 2029, an asteroid called 99942 Apophis will pass between the Moon and Earth.
  • Following its discovery in 2004, Apophis - which is the size of three-and-a-half football fields
  • - gathered the immediate attention of scientists and the media.
  • Initial calculations of its orbit by astronomers indicated a 2.7 percent possibility of an
  • Earth impact during the close flyby, so naturally humanity feared for the end of the world.
  • Fortunately though, further analysis by NASA showed that Apophis will miss Earth by 31,300
  • kilometers. That's actually closer than some geostationary satellites, which orbit the
  • Earth at a range of 36,000 km, but still far enough away that we don’t need to fear for
  • our lives.
  • The flyby will be one for the record books, as it will be the closest flyby of an asteroid
  • of its size in recorded history - and it could be the last chance astronomers have to get
  • an up close look at Apophis for a very, very, long time.
  • Number 8 Solar Eclipse
  • Okay, so we are slightly cheating with this one, as solar eclipses can usually be seen
  • somewhere on Earth each year, but 2027 has something special in store.
  • Solar eclipses occur when the Moon passes between the Sun and the Earth, and it fully
  • or partially blocks the Sun. In a total eclipse, the disc of the Sun is fully obscured by the
  • Moon, whereas in partial and annular eclipses only part of the Sun is obscured.
  • Typically, the duration of a total eclipse is in the range of 2-6 minutes. But the longest
  • solar eclipse to date lasted for 7 minutes, 28 seconds. It happened around 743 BC and
  • would have been visible across Southern Africa.
  • The next time a solar eclipse will have a duration of this length will be on 16th July
  • 2186, but most of us won't be around to see that.
  • So instead set yourself a reminder for Monday 2nd August 2027, when the second longest solar
  • eclipse of the century will occur. It will have a maximum duration of 6 minutes and 23
  • seconds.
  • It will pass through the Straits of Gibraltar then across the North African coast, before
  • dipping down to Yemen and Somalia.
  • Number 7 Supernova
  • On average, a supernova goes off twice a century in a galaxy the size of the Milky Way, so
  • scientists believe the magnificent astronomical event is imminent.
  • Supernovae are explosions that occur at the end of life for stars more massive than our
  • Sun. The massive star explodes when it has used up all its hydrogen fuel and its core
  • collapses just before it explodes, ejecting most of its mass into space.
  • They are triggered in two ways: either by the sudden re-ignition of nuclear fusion in
  • a compact star, or by the collapse of the core of a massive star.
  • The last one was spotted three decades ago, on February 23rd, 1987. Nicknamed ‘Supernova
  • 1987A’, it blazed with the power of 100 million suns for several months following
  • its discovery and was one of the brightest exploding stars in more than 400 years.
  • But when will the next supernova occur? Well, in 2013 astronomers from Ohio State University
  • calculated that a supernova occurring within our galaxy will be visible from Earth sometime
  • in the next 50 years.
  • It would be visible to telescopes but there’s also a 20% chance that the supernova would
  • be visible to the naked eye in the night sky.
  • Number 6 Venus Occults Jupiter
  • The last time Venus and Jupiter passed in front of - or occulted - one another was nearly
  • 200 hundred years ago, in January 1818.
  • At this time in history, the Battle of Koregaon between the British East India Company and
  • the Peshwa faction of the Maratha Confederacy was in full swing.
  • Those mid-battle were probably not focusing on the night sky, and even if they were, only
  • observers in a remote island of Japan were likely to see the occultation if they made
  • a very special effort to look for it in the bright morning twilight.
  • Skip ahead to the 21st Century and for the first time since 1818, on 22nd November 2065,
  • Venus will pass directly before Jupiter and form into a single, bright star, low down
  • in the dawn skyline.
  • Get your telescope ready for the event, because it will be almost impossible to view with
  • the naked eye, as it will be occurring during the daytime and in close proximity to the
  • sun.
  • Number 5 Leonid Meteor Shower
  • First noticed in 1833, this rare astronomical phenomenon occurs when Earth passes through
  • the orbit of periodic comet Tempel-Tuttle.
  • Leonid meteors are caused by tiny meteoroids that burn up in our planet's atmosphere as
  • Earth passes close to the dust-strewn orbit of Tempel-Tuttle.
  • Skywatchers have observed major Leonid meteor showers every 33 years or so from 1833, when
  • the meteor shower was said to have produced a whopping 100,000 meteors an hour.
  • Most years, Leonid storms are a minor event, boasting no more than 10 to 15 shooting stars
  • per hour. But on very rare occasions when this dense filament of dust plows directly
  • into our planet, meteor rates can soar to 100,000 per hour or more.
  • If you want to catch this spectacular sight, Tempel-Tuttle will next cause a major Leonid
  • meteor shower in 2031.
  • Number 4 Planetary Alignment
  • The possibility of an alignment between all of the planets in the solar system is very
  • rare. The closest that the eight planets will come to being aligned will occur on May 6th,
  • 2492.
  • But unless we figure out how to bring cryogenically frozen corpses back to life, none of us will
  • be alive to witness that astronomical event.
  • On the bright side, space scientists estimate that there will be a rare planetary alignment
  • of Mars, Mercury, Venus, Jupiter, Saturn and the crescent Moon on September 8th, 2040.
  • That’s just 23 years away, and is much more doable.
  • Clustered well to the east of the Sun, the planets will stage a breathtaking show at
  • 7:30 pm, so mark your calendars now!
  • Number 3 Supermoon
  • In November 2016, stargazers worldwide enjoyed a rare event, a Supermoon that was 14% bigger
  • than its normal size. This was the closest the moon had been to earth since January 26th,
  • 1948.
  • If you missed out on catching a glimpse of the 2016 supermoon, there’s an even better
  • astronomical event on the horizon. The closest supermoon of the century will occur on December
  • 6th, 2052, and it will be a once in a lifetime experience.
  • The term “supermoon” is typically defined as a full moon that coincides with the lunar
  • orb’s closest approach to Earth.
  • In 2052 our celestial neighbor will be just around 140,000 kilometers away. But what possible
  • impact could it have on us?
  • Well, many studies over the years have been aimed at finding out any statistical connection
  • between the moon - particularly the full moon - and human biology or behavior.
  • Reliable studies comparing the lunar phases to births, heart attacks, deaths, suicides,
  • psychiatric hospital admissions and epileptic seizures among other things, have time and
  • time again found little or no connection.
  • Number 2 Transit Of Earth From Mars
  • As of 2017, humans are not currently on any other planets - well, as far as we know - so
  • if a transit of Earth were about to occur anywhere soon, we could not see it. The one
  • noteworthy future exception, though, is Mars.
  • For those of you unsure what we mean by ‘transit of Earth from Mars’, it essentially means
  • when the Earth passes directly between the Sun and Mars, obscuring a small part of the
  • Sun's disc for an observer on the Red Planet.
  • No one has ever seen a transit of Earth from Mars, but if NASA’s plan to get humans living
  • on Mars by the 2030s goes ahead, this could be possible for the next such transit, which
  • will take place on November 10th, 2084.
  • This transit will be the first and only time that this phenomenon will occur in the 21st
  • century, with the next one predicted for 2394. And by then, we should definitely have colonized
  • the planet.
  • Number 1 The Birth Of A Star
  • Look up to the stars in 2022, because one of the night sky’s most visible constellations,
  • Cygnus, will be getting a new addition, and everyone on Earth will be able to see it.
  • Located about 1,800 light-years away, the star system KIC 9832227 in Cygnus has long
  • been a focus of study.
  • For years, the pair of glittery specks in this system have been circling around each
  • other, moving closer and closer, and now astronomers believe they will soon merge in an explosive
  • event known as a nova.
  • It’ll be a momentous occasion for scientists as it’s the first time they have ever been
  • able to predict the birth of a new star and this will allow them to observe the process
  • as it unfolds.
  • For us average folks, it’s going to be pretty damn extraordinary too, being able to witness
  • a once in a lifetime astronomical event without the use of a telescope.
  • Thanks for watching today’s video, we hope you enjoyed it! And if space is what you’re
  • into why not check out 10 Unknown Signals From Outer Space and we’ll see you next
  • time!

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From comets to the very special birth of a star, get your telescopes and calendars at the ready as AllTime10's brings you 10 Astronomical Events That Will Happen In Your Lifetime!

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