January 8, 2021: Speedy planet Mercury joins Jupiter and Saturn low in the south-southwest after sunset.
by Jeffrey L. Hunt
Chicago, Illinois: Sunrise, 7:18 a.m. CST; Sunset, 4:38 p.m. CST. Check local sources for sunrise and sunset times for your location.
Find a clear horizon toward the southwestern sky. Thirty minutes after sunset. locate bright Jupiter low in the sky through a binocular. Saturn is dimmer and 2.0° to the lower right of Jupiter. With a brightness between that of Jupiter and Saturn, find Mercury 2.4° to the lower left of Saturn.
This observation has a narrow window of time because Jupiter sets 75 minutes after sunset. Mercury sets only 50 minutes after sunset.
Read more about the planets during January.
April 21, 2021: Evening Star is making its first appearance in the west-northwest shortly after sunset. The gibbous moon is near Leo, while Mars is near the foot of Castor.
April 21, 2021: Jupiter and Saturn are the bright morning planets in the southeast before sunrise. The stars are in front of the backdrop of Capricornus. The constellation looks like an oversized boomerang or stealth fighter.
April 20, 2021: Venus is very low in the west-northwest after sunset. The gibbous moon is in Cancer, between Regulus and Pollux. Mars, above the horns of Taurus, approaches the star cluster Messier 35.
April 20, 2021: Bright Jupiter and Saturn are in the southeastern sky before sunrise, gently moving eastward compared to the starry backdrop of Capricornus.
April 19, 2021: The first evening appearance of Venus for this apparition occurs this evening. Look for it low in the west-northwest about 20 minutes after sunset.