Astronomy Minute

By Russ Hanson

Editor’s Note: We thought club members might be missing the “Astronomy Minute” from our monthly club meetings, so we invited Russ to share what’s going on up in the sky.

Before Sunrise
– Three planets are visible in the southeastern predawn sky. The second brightest star-like object in the sky, Jupiter, is easy to spot. The golden planet, Saturn, is to the left of Jupiter. The red-orange planet, Mars, is a little further towards the sun. These two are considerably less bright and more of a challenge to find. Good luck.

After Sunset – The brightest star-like object in the night sky, Venus, was at its brightest in late April. Can you see that it is becoming more of a crescent as it sinks further towards the sun? We should loose sight of it around June 3 as it is lost in the glare of the sun. After it transits the face of the sun, we will be able to see it start climbing away from the sun before dawn. So, starting in June, we’ll have no planets visible in our evening sky for a while.