November 27, 2020: Brilliant Venus is the lone bright morning planet. Find it in the east-southeast during early morning twilight. It is stepping eastward in Virgo, near the Virgo-Libra border.
by Jeffrey L. Hunt
Chicago, Illinois: Sunrise, 6:55 a.m. CST; Sunset, 4:22 p.m. CST. Check local sources for sunrise and sunset times for your location.
Brilliant Venus is the lone bright planet in the morning sky. For practical observing, Mercury has departed its morning view for its superior conjunction with the sun and its first evening appearance of 2021 during January and February.
Venus is stepping eastward in Virgo, near the Virgo-Libra border. It is near two dimmer stars that can be located before the sky brightens too much or spotted with binocular. This morning the planet has a conjunction with dim Lambda Virginis (λ Vir on the chart). The gap is 1.2°. The star Kappa Virginis (κ Vir) is 2.8° to the upper right of Venus.
Venus is headed toward the vicinity of Zubenelgenubi – the Southern Claw. Zubeneschamali, the Northern Claw – is nearby. Venus passes between the stars on December 4. Watch the planet step eastward compared to the starry background.
Detailed note: One hour before sunrise, Venus is 14.0° up in the east-southeast. In the starfield it is 2.8° to the lower left of κ Vir and passes 1.2° to the upper left of λ Vir.
Read more about the planets during November.
July 6, 2021: In less than a week, brilliant Venus passes Mars in the west-northwestern sky after sunset. This evening the two planets are 3.8° apart. Venus is over 18° to the lower right of the star Regulus.
July 1 – July 7, 2021, the waning crescent appears in the eastern sky. Early in the viewing period, the moon is among the dim stars of Pisces. As the week progresses, the moon wanes and moves farther eastward, appearing near Taurus.
July 5, 2021: Our planet Earth reaches its farthest point in its yearly trek around the sun. Our seasons are not related to Earth’s distance from the sun. Coincidentally, the moon is at its farthest point from Earth today.
July 5, 2021: Venus continues to close in on Mars in the west-northwest after sunset. In a week Venus passes the Red Planet.
July 4, 2021: The Venus – Mars conjunction is eight days away. This evening Venus moves to within 5° of the Red Planet.