Autumn Intermission | October 2021 Sky Happenings

Venus remains in the evening sky this month. Venus outshines everything except the Sun and the Moon, so it is unmistakably low in the southwest at dusk. Jupiter and  Saturn remain well placed for evening observing this fall. Look for Jupiter and Saturn in the south as night falls. Jupiter is brighter than all the stars we […]

Saturn Rises | July 2021 Sky Happenings

Mars is still low in the west—visible right as night falls.  Venus remains in the evening sky this month. It overtakes Mars on July 12; the two planets appear about one half degree (the size of the Full Moon) apart that night. Venus outshines everything except the Sun and the Moon, so it is unmistakable low in […]

Summer Arrives | June 2021 Sky Happenings

Map of constellations in the night sky of the month of June

Mars remains almost as bright as the stars around it in May 2021. And Mars is low in the west—still visible right as night falls.  Jupiter and  Saturn are the morning sky this month, low in the south. Venus also slowly emerges into the evening sky this month. Venus outshines everything except the Sun and the Moon, so […]

Giant conjunction on the winter solstice

On December 21, 2020, the gas giants Jupiter and Saturn appear only one tenth of one degree apart in our sky. They have not appeared that close since July 10, 1623. Of course, Jupiter is not really next to Saturn.  Saturn is in fact about 4.3 astronomical units (AU)–about 400 million miles–behind Jupiter.  (One AU […]

Sky Happenings This Month: The Autumn “Intermission”

      Autumn represents sort of an ‘intermission’ in the sky, with bright summer stars setting at dusk, while bright winter patterns such as Orion have not yet risen.   The ‘teapot’ of Sagittarius sets in the southwest early in the evening.  The Summer Triangle is high in the west.   Meanwhile, the Great Square […]

The Stargazer’s Guide To June 2018: What to look Up For This Month!

    The Big Dipper is above the North Star, with its handle pointing up.  From that handle, you can ‘arc to Arcturus’ and then ‘speed on to Spica’; those stars are in the south at dusk.  Arcturus is the fourth brightest star in the night sky, but the brightest one we see from Houston […]


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