- Dec. 31: This evening there is even a double conjunction with Venus & the Moon and Jupiter & Mercury pairing up; the latter pair is pretty close to the Sun, though. See below for the view on the past few evenings.
- Dec. 31/Jan. 1: A leap second (some background and more, more, more, more, more, more and more stories) will delay the launch of the IYA ...
- Jan. 1 ... which commences with the "Dawn of the IYA" worldwide solar observing event - everywhere at noon local time. Unfortunately the (white-light) Sun refuses to cooperate, so those having H-Alpha telescopes may be the only ones able to impress ...
- Jan. 3: The Quadrantid meteors should peak around 12:50 UTC; the Moon is in first quarter.
- Jan. 7: At 3:45 UTC the U.S. Opening Ceremony of the IYA begins - and will be webcast (something that's not guaranteed for the international kick-off on Jan. 15/16 or other national kick-offs).
- Jan. 7: Jet another Pleijades occultation by the Moon for Europe, early in the evening.
- Jan. 14: Venus reaches greatest Eastern elongation, 47° (and the Stardust s/c flies by the Earth; EPOXI visited us on Dec. 29).
- Jan. 26: Annular eclipse of the Sun for SE Asia.
- Jan. 30: And again Venus visits the Moon.
Pictures of the planets in the evening skies from several evenings, from Dec. 30 in Bavaria and Bonn, Dec. 29 in the U.S. (more), Austria, Würzburg, Hamburg and Japan (more and more pictures) and Dec. 28 from Colorado, Kansas, Arkansas and Europe. • Venus & Neptune on Dec. 28 and Venus close-up in the UV on Dec. 28 and Dec. 23 (more). • A "final numerical report" on Jupiter in 2007. • Meanwhile Saturn - with its rings nearly edge-on - has been imaged a lot: a fantastic collection and selected images of Dec. 28, Dec. 26 (more), Dec. 25, Dec. 24 (more), Dec. 22 and Dec. 20. • Finally some news about a Dark Sky Park in Scotland, a book on the 2008 TSE, nice pics of a green segment of the setting Sun, and pics & poems from the Romanian AstroTournament (and about comet McNaught 2 years ago) - plus splendid Hubble pics in large size. Happy new year!