stargaze

The Snow Moon, New Year's Comet and a lunar eclipse are all on the same day – find out how you can watch!

Julie Delahaye

Whether your children are budding astronomers, you're a fan of stargazing or simply want something different to do this weekend, make sure to bookmark Friday 10 February in your calendar. Three major celestial events are taking place all in one night, sure to make for a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Stargazers will not only be able to catch a glimpse of the impressive 'Snow Moon' but the New Year's Comet will also make an appearance – not to mention there'll be a brief, rare lunar eclipse as the sun, Earth and moon all align.

We've found out how you can witness each natural phenomenon (and why they're sure to make for an unforgettable night!) – check out our handy guide before you don your winter coat and head outside...

snow moon 2017VIEW GALLERY

You can watch three major celestial events on Friday night

SNOW MOON

How to see it: The Snow Moon is expected to rise at 4.44pm on Friday, and will be visible until 7.30am on Saturday when it sets. If you miss it, have no fear! You can catch it again on Saturday 11 February at 5.56pm when it rises again.

What to know: This full moon has been nicknamed the 'Snow Moon' because it can be seen every year in North America during February, when the winter weather is in full force with cold air temperatures and occasional bouts of snow.

LUNAR ECLIPSE

How to see it: You'll need to embrace your inner night owl for this one! The eclipse will begin at 10.34pm, peaking at 12:42am before ending at 2.53am.

What to know: This will be a rare penumbral eclipse, where the moon, Earth and sun completely align. The Earth completely blocks the sun's light, completely immersing the moon in darkness for a brief period.

More: Check out our round-up of other fun events and things to do this week

new year cometVIEW GALLERY

The New Year Comet is visible from Earth every five years

NEW YEAR COMET

How to see it: The comet is expected to be visible to the naked eye from midnight on 10 February. However, stargazing enthusiasts might want to have a pair of binoculars handy to get a closer look!

What to know: This particular comet, also known as 'the blue comet' can only be seen from Earth every five and a quarter years. Discovered in 1948, its original name is Comet 45P/Honda-Mrkos-Pajdušáková – but it was given the snappier nickname 'New Year Comet' as it began its journey across the northen hemisphere skies at the end of 2016.

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