Space calendar 2021: Rocket launches, sky events, missions & more!

LAST UPDATED March 17: These dates are topic to alter, and might be up to date all year long as firmer dates come up. Please DO NOT schedule journey primarily based on a date you see right here. Launch dates collected from NASA, ESA, RoscosmosSpaceflight Now and others.

Watch NASA webcasts and different dwell launch protection on our “Watch Live” page, and see our night sky webcasts here. Find out what’s up within the night time sky this month with our visible planets guide and skywatching forecast

Wondering what occurred right this moment in space historical past? Check out our “On This Day in Space” video show here!

March

March 18: NASA will try the second sizzling fireplace take a look at of the core stage for the  new Space Launch System (SLS) megarocket at NASA’s Stennis Space Center in Mississippi, in a two-hour window that opens at 3 p.m. EDT (1900 GMT). Watch it live

March 19: The Soyuz MS-17 crew spacecraft, which introduced three Expedition 64 crewmembers to the International Space Station in October 2020, will relocate from the Russian Rassvet module to the Poisk module. NASA astronaut Kate Rubins and Russian cosmonauts Sergey Ryzhikov and Sergey Kud-Sverchkov will undock from Rassvet at 12:43 p.m. EDT (1643 GMT) and can dock with Poisk at 1:13 p.m. EDT (1713 GMT). Watch it live

March 19: Conjunction of the moon and Mars. The waxing crescent moon will swing about 2 levels to the south of Mars within the night sky.

March 20: A Russian Soyuz rocket will launch on a rideshare mission carrying the CAS500 1 Earth commentary satellite tv for pc for South Korea, the ELSA-d energetic particles removing demonstration mission for the Japanese firm Astroscale, and 4 Earth-imaging microsatellites constructed by Axelspace of Japan. It is scheduled to launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, at 2:07 a.m. EDT (0607 GMT).

March 20: Vernal Equinox. Today at 5:37 a.m. EDT (0937 GMT) marks the primary day of spring within the Northern Hemisphere and the primary day of autumn within the Southern Hemisphere.

March 22: A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch roughly 60 satellites for SpaceX’s Starlink broadband community in a mission designated Starlink 22. It will elevate off from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida, at 6:19 p.m. EDT (2219 GMT). Watch it live

March 25: A Russian Soyuz rocket will launch 36 satellites into orbit for the OneWeb web constellation. It will elevate off from the Vostochny Cosmodrome in Siberia. Watch it live

March 28: The full moon of March, often known as the Full Worm Moon, arrives at 2:48 p.m. EDT (1817 GMT).

March 28: India’s Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mk. 2 (designated GSLV-F10) will launch India’s first GEO Imaging Satellite, or GISAT 1. It will elevate off from the Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota, India.

March 28: Venus reaches its greatest brightness in its 2021 night apparition, shining brightly at magnitude -3.9. Catch the planet simply above the western horizon at sundown. 

April 

April 6: Conjunction of the moon and Saturn. The waning crescent moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Saturn within the daybreak sky. 

April 7: Conjunction of the moon and Jupiter. The waning crescent moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Jupiter within the daybreak sky.

April 9: A Russian Soyuz rocket will launch the crewed Soyuz MS-18 spacecraft to the International Space Station with NASA astronaut Mark Vande Hei and two Russian cosmonauts, Oleg Novitsky and Pyotr Dubrov. It will elevate off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, at 3:42 a.m. EDT (0742 GMT). The Soyuz MS-18 is scheduled to reach on the space station at 6:47 a.m. EDT (1047 GMT). Watch it live

April 11: The new moon arrives at 10:31 p.m. EDT (0231 April 12 GMT).

April 15: Russian cosmonaut Sergey Ryzhikov, commander of International Space Station Expedition 64, will hand over command of the station to NASA astronaut Shannon Walker, who arrived with the SpaceX Crew-1 mission in November 2020. This will mark the beginning of ISS Expedition 65.

April 16-17: NASA astronaut Kate Rubins and Russian cosmonauts Sergey Ryzhikov and Sergey Kud-Sverchkov will return to Earth from the International Space Station of their Soyuz MS-17 spacecraft. The spacecraft will undock from the ISS at 9:34 p.m. EDT (0134 April 17 GMT) and land close to Dzhezkazgan, Kazakhstan, on April 17 at 12:57 a.m. EDT (0457 GMT). Watch it live

April 17: Lunar occultation of Mars. The waxing crescent moon will briefly move in entrance of the planet Mars for skywatchers in components of Asia. Elsewhere on this planet, the moon will make an in depth strategy to Mars. Look for the pair above the western horizon after sundown. 

April 19: An Arianespace Vega rocket, designated VV18, will launch the Pléiades Neo 1 Earth commentary satellite tv for pc for Airbus and a number of rideshare payloads. The mission will elevate off from the Guiana Spaceport close to Kourou, French Guiana, at 9:50 p.m. EDT (0150 April 20 GMT). Watch it live

April 22: A SpaceX Crew Dragon will launch the Crew-2 mission to the International Space Station for NASA. On board might be 4 crewmembers: NASA astronauts Shane Kimbrough and Megan McArthur, JAXA astronaut Akihiko Hoshide, and ESA astronaut Thomas Pesquet. It will elevate off from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, at 6:11 a.m. EDT (1011 GMT). Watch it live

April 21-22: The Lyrid meteor shower, which is energetic April 16-30, peaks in a single day.

April 26: The full moon of April, often known as the Full Pink Moon, arrives at 11:32 p.m. EDT (0332 April 27 GMT). Because the moon may also be close to perigee, or its closest level to Earth, this may also be a so-called “supermoon.”

Also scheduled to launch in April (from Spaceflight Now):

  • A Chinese Long March 5B rocket will launch Tianhe 1, the core module for a Chinese space station low Earth orbit.
  • A United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy rocket will launch a categorised spy satellite tv for pc for the U.S. National Reconnaissance Office. The mission, titled NROL-82, will elevate off from Space Launch Complex 6 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida.
  • India’s Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) will launch on its first orbital take a look at flight from the Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota, India.
  • The SpaceX Crew-1 mission will return to Earth with NASA astronauts Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover and Shannon Walker, and JAXA astronaut Soichi Noguchi, in late April or early May. Watch it live

May 

May 3: Conjunction of the moon and Saturn. The last-quarter moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Saturn within the daybreak sky. 

May 4: Conjunction of the moon and Jupiter. The waning crescent moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Jupiter within the daybreak sky. 

May 4: Star Wars Day. (May the Fourth be with you.)

May 4-5: The Eta Aquarid meteor shower, which is energetic from mid-April to the tip of May, peaks in a single day. 

May 11: The new moon arrives at 3 p.m. EDT (1900 GMT).

May 15: Mercury reaches its highest point in the evening sky, shining brightly at magnitude 0.3. See it simply above the western horizon proper after sundown. 

May 16: Conjunction of the moon and Mars. The waxing crescent moon will swing about 2 levels to the south of Mars within the night sky.

May 17: Mercury at greatest elongation east. The innermost planet will attain its biggest japanese separation from the solar, shining brightly at magnitude 0.3. Catch the elusive planet above the western horizon shortly after sundown.

May 26: The full moon of May, often known as the Full Flower Moon, arrives at 7:14 a.m. EDT (1114 GMT). It may also be the closest “supermoon” of the 12 months. That night time, a complete lunar eclipse, also called a “Blood Moon,” might be seen from Australia, components of the western United States, western South America and Southeast Asia.

May 30: Conjunction of the moon and Saturn. The waning gibbous moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Saturn within the daybreak sky. 

Also scheduled to launch in May (from Spaceflight Now):

  • Starliner OFT-2: A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket will launch Boeing’s CST-100 Starliner spacecraft on its second uncrewed mission to the International Space Station, following a partial failure in December 2019. The Orbital Flight Test 2 (OFT-2) mission will elevate off from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida. Watch it live
  • Arianespace will use an Ariane 5 ECA rocket, designated VA254, to launch the Star One D2 and Eutelsat Quantum communications satellites from the Guiana Spaceport close to Kourou, French Guiana. Watch it live
  • A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket will launch the U.S. Space Force’s fifth Space Based Infrared System Geosynchronous satellite tv for pc (SBIRS GEO 5) from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. 
  • China’s Tianwen-1 Mars rover will contact down on the Red Planet.

June 

June 1: Conjunction of the moon and Jupiter. Just in the future earlier than reaching last-quarter part, the waning gibbous moon will swing about 5 levels to the south of Jupiter within the daybreak sky.

June 1: A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch the Transporter 2 rideshare mission with a number of small satellites for business and authorities prospects. It will elevate off from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida. Watch it live

June 10: The new moon arrives at 6:53 a.m. EDT (1053 GMT).

June 10: An annular solar eclipse, also called a “ring of fire” eclipse, might be seen from components of Russia, Greenland and and northern Canada. Skywatchers in Northern Asia, Europe and the United States will see a partial eclipse.

June 13: Conjunction of the moon and Mars. The waxing crescent moon will swing about 3 levels to the south of Mars within the night sky.

June 20: The solstice arrives at 11:16 p.m. EDT (0316 June 21 GMT), marking the primary day of summer season within the Northern Hemisphere and the primary day of winter within the Southern Hemisphere. 

June 24: The full moon of June, often known as the Full Strawberry Moon, arrives at 2:40 p.m. EDT (1940 GMT).

June 27: Conjunction of the moon and Saturn. The waning gibbous moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Saturn within the daybreak sky. 

June 28: Conjunction of the moon and Jupiter. The waning gibbous moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Jupiter within the daybreak sky.

June 30: A Russian Soyuz rocket will launch the Progress 78P cargo resupply spacecraft to the International Space Station from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

Also scheduled to launch in June (from Spaceflight Now):

  • A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch a Dragon cargo resupply mission (CRS-22) to the International Space Station. It will elevate off from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Watch it live
  • A U.S. Air Force and Northrop Grumman Minotaur 1 rocket will launch a categorised spy satellite tv for pc for the U.S. National Reconnaissance Office in a mission referred to as NROL-111. It will elevate off from Pad 0B at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Wallops Island, Virginia. Watch it live
  • A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch the Turksat 5B communications satellite tv for pc from Cape Canaveral, Florida. Watch it live

July 

July 5: Happy aphelion day! Earth is farthest from the solar right this moment. 

July 9: Mercury reaches its highest point in the morning sky, shining brightly at magnitude 0.3. See it simply above the southeast horizon simply earlier than dawn. 

July 9: The new moon arrives at 9:16 p.m. EDT (0116 July 10 GMT)

July 12: Conjunction of the moon and Venus. The waxing crescent moon will move about 3 levels to the north of Venus

July 23: The full moon of July, often known as the Full Buck Moon, arrives at 10:37 p.m. EDT (0237 July 24 GMT). 

July 24: Conjunction of the moon and Saturn. The full moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Saturn within the daybreak sky. 

July 25: Conjunction of the moon and Jupiter. The waning crescent moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Jupiter within the daybreak sky. 

Also scheduled to launch in July (from Spaceflight Now):

  • A SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket will launch the USSF-44 mission for the U.S. Air Force. The mission will elevate off from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida and is anticipated to deploy two undisclosed payloads into geosynchronous orbit.
  • A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will the U.S. Space Force’s fifth third-generation navigation satellite tv for pc for the Global Positioning System (GPS 3 SV05). It will elevate off from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida.
  • India’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) will launch the Indian RISAT 1A radar Earth commentary satellite tv for pc from the Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota, India.
  • India’s Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) will launch its first business mission with 4 Earth commentary satellites for the Seattle-based firm BlackSky Global. It will elevate off from the Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota, India.

August

Aug. 2: Saturn at opposition. The ringed planet might be straight reverse the solar in Earth’s sky across the similar time that it makes its closest strategy to Earth all 12 months. This means it can seem at its largest and brightest of the 12 months. Saturn will attain its highest level within the night time sky round midnight. 

Aug. 8: The new moon arrives at 9:50 a.m. EDT (1350 GMT)

Aug. 11: Conjunction of the moon and Venus. The waxing crescent moon will move about 4 levels to the north of Venus. Look for the pair above the western horizon after sundown. 

Aug. 11-12: The annual Perseid meteor shower, which is energetic from mid-July to the tip of August, peaks in a single day. 

Aug. 18: A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch a Dragon cargo resupply mission (CRS-23) to the International Space Station. It will elevate off from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Watch it live

Aug. 19: Jupiter at opposition. The gas big might be straight reverse the solar in Earth’s sky across the similar time that it makes its closest strategy to Earth of the 12 months. The planet will shine at its largest and brightest tonight and might be seen all night time lengthy. 

Aug. 20: Conjunction of the moon and Saturn. The waxing gibbous moon will swing about 3 levels to the south of Saturn within the night sky. 

Aug. 21: A Russian Soyuz rocket will launch the Progress 79 cargo resupply spacecraft to the International Space Station. It will elevate off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. 

Aug. 22: The full moon of August, often known as the Full Sturgeon Moon, happens at 8:02 a.m. EDT (1202 GMT). This may also be a so-called “Blue Moon” as a result of it’s the third full moon in a season that has 4 full moons. 

Aug. 22: Conjunction of the moon and Jupiter. The Blue Sturgeon moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Jupiter within the night time sky. 

Also scheduled to launch in August (from Spaceflight Now):

  • A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket will launch the USSF-8 mission for the Space Force’s Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program (GSSAP). It will elevate off from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida. Watch it live

September

Sept. 3: Mercury reaches its highest level within the night sky. Shining at magnitude 0.1, the innermost planet might be barely seen above the western horizon at sundown.

Sept. 6: The new moon arrives at 8:52 p.m. EDT (0052 Sept. 7 GMT).

Sept. 9: Conjunction of the moon and Venus. The waxing crescent moon will move about 4 levels to the north of Venus. Look for the pair above the western horizon after sundown. 

Sept. 13: Mercury at greatest elongation east. The innermost planet will attain its biggest japanese separation from the solar, shining brightly at magnitude 0.1. Catch the elusive planet above the western horizon shortly after sundown.

Sept. 13: A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch a Crew Dragon spacecraft on the Crew-3 mission, the third operational astronaut flight to the International Space Station. On board might be NASA astronauts Raja Chari and Thomas Marshburn, and European Space Agency astronaut Matthias Maurer. (The fourth crewmember has not but been introduced). It will elevate off from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Sept. 14: Neptune at opposition. The gas big will seem at its largest and brightest of the 12 months, shining at magnitude 7.8. (You’ll want a telescope to see it.)

Sept. 16: Conjunction of the moon and Saturn. The waxing gibbous moon will swing about 3 levels to the south of Saturn within the night sky. 

Sept. 18: Conjunction of the moon and Jupiter. The waxing gibbous moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Jupiter within the night sky. 

Sept. 20: The full moon of September, often known as the Full Harvest Moon, happens at 7:55 p.m. EDT (2355 GMT).

Sept. 22: The equinox arrives at 3:21 p.m. EDT (1921 GMT), marking the primary day of autumn within the Northern Hemisphere and the primary day of spring within the Southern Hemisphere.

Sept. 22: A Russian Soyuz rocket will launch the Soyuz MS-19 crew capsule to the International Space Station with Russian cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov and two space vacationers: Russian movie director Klim Shipenko and a (not-yet-named) Russian actress, who plan to movie a film whereas spending one week in space. (The two filmmakers are scheduled to return to Earth on the Soyuz MS-18 crew capsule.) Watch it live

Sept. 24: The waning gibbous moon and Uranus will make a close approach, passing inside 1.3 levels of one another. Shining at magnitude 5.7, Uranus could also be brilliant sufficient to identify with the bare eye underneath darkish skies. 

Also scheduled to launch in September (from Spaceflight Now):

  • An Arianespace Soyuz rocket will launch two satellites for Europe’s Galileo navigation constellation. It will elevate off from the Guiana Space Center close to Kourou, French Guiana. 
  • Boeing plans to launch the primary crewed take a look at flight of its Starliner spacecraft, which can ship NASA astronauts Mike Fincke, Nicole Mann, and Barry “Butch” Wilmore to the International Space Station on an Atlas V rocket. The mission will elevate off from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida. Watch it live
  • A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch the primary two WorldView Legion Earth commentary satellites from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. Watch it live

October

Oct. 6: The new moon arrives at 7:05 a.m. EDT (1105 GMT)

Oct. 8: The Draconid meteor shower, which is energetic Oct. 6-10, will peak in a single day.

Oct. 9: Conjunction of the moon and Venus. The waxing crescent moon will move about 3 levels to the north of Venus. Look for the pair above the western horizon after sundown. 

Oct. 14: Conjunction of the moon and Saturn. The waxing gibbous moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Saturn within the night sky. 

Oct. 15: Conjunction of the moon and Jupiter. The waxing gibbous moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Jupiter within the night sky. 

Oct. 16: NASA will launch its Lucy mission to check the Trojan asteroids. It will elevate off from Kennedy Space Center in Florida on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket. Watch it live

Oct. 20: The full moon of October, identified on the Full Hunter’s Moon, happens at 10:57 a.m. EDT (1457 GMT). 

Oct. 21: The waning gibbous moon and Uranus will make a close approach, passing inside 1.3 levels of one another. Shining at magnitude 5.7, Uranus could also be brilliant sufficient to identify with the bare eye underneath darkish skies.

Oct. 21-22: The annual Orionid meteor shower, which is energetic all month lengthy, peaks in a single day.

Oct. 24: Mercury at greatest elongation west. The innermost planet will attain its biggest western separation from the solar, shining brightly at magnitude -0.6. Catch the elusive planet above the japanese horizon shortly earlier than dawn. The following day (Oct. 25) Mercury will reach its highest point within the morning sky.

Oct. 31: NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope is scheduled to elevate off from the Guiana Space Center in Kourou, French Guiana, on an Ariane 5 ECA rocket. Watch it live

Also scheduled to launch in October (from Spaceflight Now):

  • A SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket will launch the united states 52 mission for the U.S. Space Force. It will elevate off from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
  • The Soyuz MS-18 crew capsule will return to Earth from the International Space Station with Russian cosmonaut Oleg Novitsky, in addition to two space vacationers: Russian movie director Klim Shipenko and a (not-yet-named) Russian actress, who may have arrived on the Soyuz MS-19 mission in September and plan to movie a film in space. Watch it live

November

Nov. 2-3: The annual South Taurid meteor bathe peaks in a single day. Active from mid-September to mid-November, the Southern Taurids hardly ever produce greater than 5 seen meteors per hour, however the nearly-new moon ought to make them simpler to identify towards a darkish sky. 

Nov. 4: The new moon arrives at 5:15 p.m. EDT (2115 GMT).

Nov. 4: Uranus is at opposition, that means it can seem at its largest and brightest of the 12 months. Shining at magnitude 5.7, the planet might be seen all night time lengthy within the constellation Aries. Uranus could also be to the bare eye from darkish areas however is finest seen by means of a telescope or binoculars. 

Nov. 7: Daylight Saving Time ends. Turn your clocks again one hour at 2 a.m. native time. 

Nov. 8: Conjunction of the moon and Venus. The waxing crescent moon will move about 1 diploma to the north of Venus. Look for the pair above the western horizon after sundown. Skywatchers in components of Eastern Asia will see the moon occult Venus, that means it can briefly move in entrance of the planet, blocking it from sight.

Nov. 10: Conjunction of the moon and Saturn. The waxing crescent moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Saturn within the night sky. 

Nov. 11: Conjunction of the moon and Jupiter. The first-quarter moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Jupiter within the night sky.

Nov. 11-12: The annual North Taurid meteor bathe peaks in a single day. The bathe, which is energetic from late October to mid-December, shouldn’t be anticipated to provide greater than a handful of seen “shooting stars” per hour.

Nov. 16-17: One of probably the most anticipated meteor showers of the 12 months, the Leonid meteor shower peaks in a single day. The Leonids are anticipated to provide about 15 meteors per hour on the night time of the height, however the bathe is energetic all month lengthy. 

Nov. 17: A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch the NASA’s Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer (IXPE) from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Nov. 19: The full moon of November, often known as the Full Beaver Moon, happens at 3:58 a.m. EST (0858 GMT). 

Nov. 19: A partial lunar eclipse might be seen from North and South America, Australia, and components of Europe and Asia. The moon will enter Earth’s faint outer shadow, often known as the penumbra, at 1:02 a.m. EDT (0602 GMT). The partial eclipse, when the moon will darken extra noticeably, begins at 2:18 a.m. EDT (0718 GMT). Maximum eclipse happens at 4:02 a.m. EDT (0902 GMT). The complete occasion will final about six hours. 

Nov. 24: A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch NASA’s Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) mission from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. 

December

Dec. 4: The solely total solar eclipse of the 12 months (and the final complete solar eclipse till 2023) might be seen from Antarctica. Skywatchers in South Africa, Namibia, the southern tip of South America and a few islands within the South Atlantic will be capable to see a minimum of a partial solar eclipse, with the moon blocking a portion of the solar from view. 

Dec. 4: The new moon arrives at 2:44 a.m. EST (0744 GMT).

Dec. 6: Conjunction of the moon and Venus. The waxing crescent moon will move about 2 levels to the north of Venus. Look for the pair above the western horizon after sundown.

Dec. 7: A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket will launch the GOES-T climate satellite tv for pc for NASA and NOAA. It will elevate off from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida, at 4:40 p.m. EST (2140 GMT).

Dec. 7: Conjunction of the moon and Saturn. The waxing crescent moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Saturn within the night sky. 

Dec. 9: Conjunction of the moon and Jupiter. The waxing crescent moon will swing about 4 levels to the south of Jupiter within the night sky.

Dec. 13-14: The annual Geminid meteor shower, among the finest meteor showers of the 12 months, peaks in a single day. The Geminids are energetic Dec. 4-17 typically produce as much as 50 seen meteors per hours, however this 12 months the 78% full moon will outshine the fainter meteors. 

Dec. 18: The full moon of December, often known as the Full Cold Moon, happens at 11:37 p.m. EST (0437 Dec. 19 GMT).

Dec. 21: The solstice arrives at 10:59 a.m. EST (1559 GMT), marking the primary day of winter within the Northern Hemisphere and the primary day of summer season within the Southern Hemisphere. 

Dec. 21-22: The annual Ursid meteor shower peaks in a single day. Typically energetic round Dec. 17-26, the Ursids produce about 5 to 10 seen meteors per hour on the morning of the height.

More coming in 2021…

Q1: A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket will launch the STP-3 rideshare mission for the U.S. Space Force. It will elevate off from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida.

Q1: A Rocket Lab Electron rocket will launch on its first mission from a new launch pad on the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport at Wallops Island, Virginia. It will launch an experimental mission for the U.S. Air Force’s Space Test Program referred to as Monolith, which carries a space climate instrument.

Q2: A Chinese Long March 7 rocket will launch the Tianzhou 2 cargo resupply ship on the primary cargo supply mission to the Chinese space station. It will elevate off from the Wenchang Space Launch Center in China’s Hainan province.

Mid-2021: An Arianespace Vega C rocket will launch the LARES 2 satellite tv for pc for the Italian space agency. It will elevate off from the Guiana Space Center close to Kourou, French Guiana. 

Mid-2021: A Chinese Long March 2F rocket will launch the Shenzhou 12 spacecraft with a number of Chinese astronauts on the primary crewed mission to the Chinese space station. 

Please ship any corrections, updates or recommended calendar additions to [email protected] Follow Space.com for the most recent in space science and exploration information on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Facebook.

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