The Sky This Month October 2021 |

FROM THE October 2021 ISSUE

Catch Mercury in the morning.

By Martin Ratcliffe, Alister Ling  |  Published: Friday, October 1, 2021

Mercury takes center stage in this early January 2018 shot. The solar system’s smallest planet once again rules the dawn twilight this month in its best morning appearance of 2021.

Mercury springs into action in the last two weeks of October, offering its best morning appearance for 2021.

Venus, by contrast, hangs low in the southwestern sky all month. Jupiter and Saturn dominate the evening sky, visible through midnight. And late-evening binocular views of Uranus and Neptune beckon more adventurous observers.

Let’s begin in the evening sky. Venus is visible soon after sunset, low in the southwest. It begins the month at magnitude –4.2 and brightens to –4.5 by Oct. 25.

The planet lies in Libra for the first week of October and crosses into Scorpius Oct. 7. Venus spends part of Oct. 15 crossing a small corner of Ophiuchus, before returning to Scorpius and passing 1.5° north of Antares on the 16th. It returns to Ophiuchus Oct. 21 and stays there through the end of the month.

Source: The Sky This Month October 2021 |