January 1, 2021: Brilliant Morning Planet Venus is low in the southeast before sunrise. The moon is in the west between Regulus and Pollux.
by Jeffrey L. Hunt
Chicago, Illinois: Sunrise, 7:18 a.m. CST; Sunset, 4:31 p.m. CST. Check local sources for sunrise and sunset times for your location.
Brilliant Venus is slowly slipping to the sun’s brilliant glare. Now rising nearly 90 minutes before sunrise, the Morning Star is low in the southeast at about 45 minutes before sunrise. A clear horizon, free from trees, buildings and other obstructions, along with a cloud-free sky near the horizon, is necessary to track the planet throughout the month.
This morning the star Antares is over 12° to the upper right of the brilliant planet.
Farther westward, the moon is the western sky between Pollux and Regulus.
Read about Venus during January.
Detailed Note: Forty-five minutes before sunrise, Venus (m = −3.9) is about 6° in altitude in the southeast. It is over 12° to the lower left of Antares (α Sco, m = 1.0). The moon (17.8 days after the New moon phase, 94% illuminated) is nearly one-third of the way up in the west, between Pollux (β Gem, m = 1.2) and Regulus (α Leo, m = 1.3). The lunar orb is nearly 16° to the upper left of Pollux and over 20° to the lower right of Regulus.
Read more about the planets during January.
February 19-21: The bright moon moves through the constellation Taurus. Use a binocular to see the starry background with the moon.
February 18, 2021: The moon, waxing toward its First Quarter moon phase, is high in the southwest after sunset. Planet Mars is 3.8° to the upper right of the moon. Mars is parading eastward compared to the starry background in eastern Aries as it heads toward the Taurus border.
February 6, 2021: Before sunrise, look east-southeast for the waning crescent moon. It is 4.5° to the upper left of Antares – the rival of Mars.