Will you spot the moon and Jupiter?

earthsky.org | 1/20/2020 | Bruce McClure
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Click For Photo: https://en.es-static.us/upl/2020/01/Multiple-Moon-Jupiter-Mars-Antares-Jan-2019-20-21-22-300x300.jpg

Up for a sky watching challenge? Jupiter disappeared from our evening sky in late 2019, and – for some weeks – has been traveling behind the sun from Earth. Now Jupiter has returned to the east before sunrise, but – depending on your sky conditions – may now be playing hide-and-seek in your sky. Have you seen it yet? On January 21 and 22, you can use the slender waning crescent moon to locate Jupiter. The lit side of the moon will point in Jupiter’s direction on the sky’s dome.

As the chart above shows, the red planet Mars is also in the east, easily visible to the eye before dawn right now. However, Mars isn’t nearly as bright as Jupiter. Mars and the nearby red star Antares might fade from view by the time Jupiter rises into your sky.

Horizon - Direction - Sunrise - Jupiter - Quest

You’ll need an unobstructed horizon in the direction of sunrise for your Jupiter quest. If possible, find a hill or balcony to stand on, so you can peek a little farther over the horizon. Although Jupiter is the fourth-brightest celestial body to light up the sky – after the sun, moon, and the planet Venus – you still might need binoculars to spot Jupiter close to the horizon in the hazy murk of dawn.

Incidentally, there’s no way to mistake Venus for Jupiter, or vice versa. Venus is...
(Excerpt) Read more at: earthsky.org
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