January 11, 2021: During bright twilight, the razor-thin crescent moon joins Venus in the southeast.
by Jeffrey L. Hunt
Chicago, Illinois: Sunrise, 7:17 a.m. CST; Sunset, 4:41 p.m. CST. Check local sources for sunrise and sunset times for your location.
Find a clear horizon toward the southeast. About 30 minutes before sunrise, the razor-thin crescent moon, that is 3% illuminated, is 3.9° to the right of brilliant Venus. Because of the brightness of the sky, use a binocular to initially locate the lunar crescent and Venus.
This is the final visible grouping of Venus and the moon during this morning appearance of the brilliant planet.
Venus reaches its superior conjunction with the sun during late March. It then appears later during the spring in the evening sky.
At superior conjunction, either Mercury or Venus is “behind” the sun. Not literally, but it is spaced so that the sun is between that planet and Earth. Usually difficult to see and not a good target for the sun’s intensity can damage a mis-aimed telescope.
Detailed Note: Thirty minutes before sunrise, locate a clear horizon to observe the final visible grouping of the moon and Venus during this Venusian apparition. The moon (27.8d, 3%) is 3.9° to the right of the brilliant planet.
Read more about the planets during January.
April 25, 2021: Mercury passes Evening Star Venus this evening after sunset. Look low in the western sky about 20 minutes after sunset. Mars is marching eastward in Gemini, near the star cluster Messier 35. The bright moon is near Spica.
April 25, 2021: Morning planets Jupiter and Saturn are in the southeast before sunrise. Jupiter is in front of the stars of Aquarius, while Saturn’s starry background is Capricornus.
April 24, 2021: Brilliant Evening Star Venus and bright Mercury are entering the evening sky. They are low in the west-northwest during evening twilight. The bright moon is in the southeast in Virgo. Mars moves into Gemini as it approaches the star cluster Messier 35.
April 24, 2021: The bright gibbous moon is near a star in Virgo during the early morning. From parts of the Western Hemisphere, the moon covers the star. Before sunrise, bright morning planets, Jupiter and Saturn are in the southeast before sunrise.
April 23, 2021: Evening Star Venus and Mercury are entering the evening sky. They are found very low in the west-northwest after sunset. The bright moon is in the southeastern sky during the early evening. Mars is moving toward the star cluster Messier 35.