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.
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.