Enjoying EarthSky? Subscribe.

143,353 subscribers and counting ...

Tonight

Moon and Jupiter closest on March 29

2015-march-29-jupiter-moon-night-sky-chart

Tonight – March 29, 2015 – it’ll be hard to miss the king planet Jupiter as the dazzling starlike object near the moon. The moon and Jupiter – nighttime’s brightest and third-brightest lights in the sky – meet up in front of the constellation Cancer the Crab, not far from the legendary Beehive star cluster.

Moon, Gemini stars, Jupiter on March 28

2015-march-28-jupiter-castor-pollux-procyon-night-sky-chart

Tonight – March 28, 2015 – the waxing gibbous moon isn’t far from the very bright planet Jupiter on the sky’s dome. If you look carefully, you should also see the Gemini stars Castor and Pollux – noticeable for their brightness and nearness to each other – near the moon and Jupiter. Another bright star, Procyon, is also nearby. Just remember, Jupiter easily outshines all these stars. It’s the brightest object in the moon’s vicinity tonight.

Moon north of Winter Triangle on March 27

If you're at mid-latitudes in the Southern Hemisphere, turn this chart upside-down!

If you’re at mid-latitudes in the Southern Hemisphere, turn this chart upside-down!

Yesterday, on March 26, we featured the Winter Circle, that great big lasso of brilliant stars that even dwarfs the constellation Orion the Giant Hunter. Orion makes up the southwestern part of the Winter Circle, whereas the Winter Triangle fills up the southeastern part of the humongous Winter Circle.

Moon and Winter Circle on March 26

2015-march-26-winter-circle-winter-triangle-orion's-belt-night-sky-chart

Tonight’s wide waxing crescent moon resides inside the Winter Circle – an incredibly large star configuration made of six brilliant stars – as seen from North America. We’ll see the Winter Circle fill up much of the south to southwest sky at dusk/nightfall. Elsewhere in the world, the moon will also be in the midst of these stars, or at least near them.

On March 25, moon heading to northern standstill

2015-march-25-aldebaran-pleiades-moon-night-sky-chart

At northern lunar standstill – its northernmost point for the month – on March 26 at 14:29 UTC, the moon is about 18 degrees north of the celestial equator. That places it high in Northern Hemisphere, low in Southern Hemisphere, skies.

Star of the week: Acrux, brightest star in Southern Cross

Constellation Crux photo by Christopher J Picking in New Zealand. Used with permission.

Bluish Acrux, otherwise known as Alpha Crucis, is the brightest star in the constellation Crux the Southern Cross. It is the 13th brightest star in all the sky. Because it is located far to the south of the sky’s equator, this star cannot be seen from much of North America. Observers north of central Florida or south Texas are out of luck. Observers in Hawaii sometimes tell us they’ve spotted it. You have to be in the Southern Hemisphere to see Crux in all its glory. Therein lies much of its magic and mystery. Follow the links inside to learn more.

Bright Aldebaran near moon on March 24

2015-march-24-aldebaran-pleiades-moon-night-sky-chart

Tonight – March 24 – look west after sunset for Aldebaran, the brightest star in the constellationTaurus the Bull. You’ll be able to identify it because it’ll be the bright star in the glare of the waxing crescent moon.

Moon between Venus and Pleiades on March 23

2015-march-23-venus-pleiades-moon-night-sky-chart

As soon as darkness falls, look westward to behold the waxing crescent moon shining above the dazzling planet Venus and below the Pleiades star cluster. Venus, the third-brightest celestial object to light up the heavens after the sun and moon, comes out first thing at dusk. You’ll have to wait until nightfall to see the Pleiades cluster, which is visible to the unaided eye. The Pleiades is also known as the Seven Sisters.

Catch the moon and Venus on March 22!

If you have a very clear sky and unobstructed horizon - and if you're in the Northern Hemisphere - you might catch Mars below the moon and Venus on March 22, 2015.

If you have a very clear sky and unobstructed horizon – and if you’re in the Northern Hemisphere – you might catch Mars below the moon and Venus on March 22, 2015.

Tonight – March 22, 2015 – if your sky is clear, you should be able to see the young waxing crescent moon smiling at you in the western evening dusk.

Moon and Mars below Venus on March 21

The moon and Mars will be tough to spot from the Southern Hemisphere, but possible from the Northern Hemisphere if you have a clear sky after sunset.

The moon and Mars will be tough to spot from the Southern Hemisphere, but possible from the Northern Hemisphere if you have a clear sky after sunset.

The new moon was yesterday, and after new moon comes the best-loved of all moon phases. That is, the moon early this week will appear as a waxing crescent visible in the west after sunset. Will you see it tonight? Maybe. And if you do, that little dot next to the moon is Mars!