The Moon, Venus, and Jupiter are the brightest night sky objects. On Thursday evening, November 28, they’ll all align, plus Saturn, too.
As the planets orbit the Sun throughout the year, their positions continuously migrate.
As seen from Earth, Venus is the brightest one, followed by Jupiter, Mars, Mercury and Saturn.
As 2019 has progressed, Saturn has followed Jupiter in its sky-crossing migration from east to west.
Meanwhile, for about the past month, Venus has emerged as an evening star after sunset, drifting from west to east.
On Sunday, November 24, Venus and Jupiter nearly met — achieving a conjunction — coming within 1.4° of each other.
Visible in the post-sunset skies, a faint Saturn can be seen trailing about 15° behind the pair.
As the coming days pass by, Venus continues its eastward journey, moving away from Jupiter and closer towards Saturn.
On November 26, the Moon reaches its new phase, with Venus still close by Jupiter.
On November 28, the emerging crescent Moon joins them both, creating a spectacular celestial alignment.
From the Americas, these objects will make a line: Jupiter closest to the horizon, followed by Venus and the Moon, and trailed by more-distant Saturn.
But from Europe and Africa, the Moon will appear right between our two brightest planets, creating a spectacular visual trio.
Mostly Mute Monday tells an astronomical story in images, visuals, and no more than 200 words. Talk less; smile more.Ethan Siegel is the author of Beyond the Galaxy and Treknology. You can pre-order his third book, currently in development: the Encyclopaedia Cosmologica.