The Goddess of Love Gleams in the West with Maximum Mercury, and Pretty Planets Parade before Dawn!

Evening Zodiacal light

( Zodiacal light. Image Credit: ESO (Yuri Beletsky) )

The Moon and Planets 🌕

Fresh from reaching its full phase on Sunday morning, the very bright moon will dominate the evening and midnight sky all over the world during the first nights of this week. But as it commences the second half of its monthly orbit of Earth, the moon will wane in phase and rise later every night — leaving our evenings nice and dark on the coming weekend.

( You will never miss full moons and other celestial events with the free stargazing app Star Walk 2 for iOS and Android. )
( Northern Hemisphere observers can look for the planet Mercury every night this week. It is easy to locate Mercury in the sky with the free stargazing app Star Walk 2 for iOS and Android. )
( Planets Parade (Mars, Jupiter, Saturn) in the pre-dawn sky on February 16, 2020. Use the free stargazing app Star Walk 2 for iOS and Android to find out the best viewing time in your area. )

Binocular Comet Update ☄️

A relatively modest comet is traversing the northeastern evening sky this winter — and this week’s young, waxing moon will allow observers in the Northern Hemisphere to continue watching it. The comet is named C/2017 T2 (PanSTARRS), after the robotic telescope that discovered it and the date it did so. It is currently shining at about magnitude 9 — well within reach of medium or large binoculars and backyard telescopes. It is conveniently positioned in the sky for evening viewing. It’s very high in the northern sky after dusk — and then it drops lower in mid-evening as the Earth’s rotation carries the northwestern sky lower.

Point your device at the sky and see what stars, constellations, and satellites you are looking at 🌌✨