Morning Planets Venus, Jupiter and Saturn sparkle in a clear, frosty sky this morning as seen from the Chicago area. Brilliant Venus is closely paired with Saturn in the southeastern sky, separated by less than one degree. Venus is moving to the east compared to the stars faster than Saturn. They are in front of the stars of Virgo with its brightest star, Spica, appearing above them.
Bright Jupiter appears in the west, nearly 145 degrees from Venus, in this image made at 5:25 a.m. CST. It is in front of the stars of Taurus with its bright star, Aldebaran, nearby. Two star clusters, the Pleiades and the Hyades appear in the image as well. The bull’s horns, Zeta Tauri and Elnath are above Jupiter. Betelgeuse (Orion) appears in this image as well.
For our monthly sky watching posting, click here. Watch the planetary pair in the morning sky throughout the next several months. Read more about Venus as a Morning Star. (Click the images to see them larger.)