Brilliant Morning Star Venus shines as “the bright star in the eastern sky before sunrise.” The planet is near the star Spica. Mercury joins Venus, but it is lower in the sky.
by Jeffrey L. Hunt
Chicago, Illinois: Sunrise, 6:43 a.m. CST; Sunset, 4:28 p.m. CST. Check local sources for sunrise and sunset times for your location.
Brilliant Venus and Mercury continue to appear in the east-southeast before sunrise. Mercury is heading back into the sun’s glare as it widens its gap to Venus. This morning the morning planets are over 13° apart.
Yesterday, Venus passed Spica, in a widely spaced conjunction, but the two are slightly farther apart this morning, 3.9°. Continue to watch Venus step eastward compared to the stars.
Find a clear horizon to see Mercury.
Detailed note: One hour before sunrise, Venus is less than 17° in altitude above the east-southeast horizon. The brilliant planet is 3.9° to the upper left of Spica. The Venus – Mercury gap continues to widen. This morning they are 13.1° apart. Fifteen minutes later, Mercury is over 7° up in the east-southeast.
Read more about the planets during November.
October 23, 2021: This morning the bright moon is near the Pleiades star cluster. Mercury is making its best morning appearance. In the evening sky, Venus, Jupiter and Saturn are easy to spot.
October 22. 2021: Speedy Mercury is low in the east before sunrise. It is putting on its best morning performance of the year. Arcturus, in the east-northeast, is about the same altitude as Mercury.
October 21-November 1, 2021: Brilliant Venus steps through Ophiuchus to the upper left of the star Antares in the southwest after sunset . Afterward, the planet steps farther eastward.
October 21, 2021: The bright moon is low in the west about an hour before sunrise. Mercury is in the east at about the same altitude as Arcturus. Venus, Saturn, and Jupiter shine from the evening sky.
December 18, 2021: This is the anticipated launch date of the James Webb Space Telescope, the largest and most sophisticated space telescope view the universe.