November 21, 2020: Bright Morning Star Venus shines in the east-southeast this morning above the speedy planet Mercury. Use a binocular to spot Mercury near the star Zubenelgenubi.
by Jeffrey L. Hunt
Chicago, Illinois: Sunrise, 6:48 a.m. CST; Sunset, 4:25 p.m. CST. Check local sources for sunrise and sunset times for your location.
Venus rises in the eastern sky about 4:15 a.m. CST, over an hour after Mars sets in the west. As sunrise approaches, find it low in the east-southeast. It is moving eastward in front of the stars of Pisces. Mercury – near the horizon – to the lower left of Venus, is 1.8° to the upper left of Zubenelgenubi. Use a binocular to see the star.
Mercury is completing its best morning appearance of the year as it heads toward its superior conjunction next month.
Detailed note: One hour before sunrise Venus – over 15° up in the east-southeast – is 2.9° to the lower left of 82 Vir and 4.9° to the upper right of Kappa Virginis (κ Vir, m = 4.2). Forty-five minutes before sunrise, Mercury – over 14° to the lower left of Venus – is 1.8° to the upper left of Zubenelgenubi.
Read more about the planets during November.
December 11, 2020: The Great Conjunction countdown: 10 days! Jupiter and Saturn are low in the southwest as night falls. Jupiter continues to close the gap to the Ringed Wonder. Farther eastward, Mars marches eastward in Pisces.
December 11, 2020: As sunrise approaches, the crescent moon is to the upper right of the brilliant planet Venus.
December 10, 2020: The Great Conjunction countdown: 11 days. Jupiter and Saturn are in the southwest as night falls. Bright Mars is in the southeast.