This Month’s Sky – January 2014

January’s Evening Planets: Venus moves out of the evening sky. Making up for the loss – Jupiter (visible almost all night), followed by Mars.

January’s Evening Stars: Spot Cassiopeia the Queen, Andromeda the Princess, and Perseus the Hero. Rising in the east are the magnificent stars of winter: Auriga the Charioteer, Taurus the Bull, Gemini the Twins, and Orion the Hero. Joining them, soon, will be Canis Major, the Large Dog and Canis Minor, the Little Dog.

January’s Morning Planets: Jupiter is low in Gemini, and Mars is in Virgo. Later in the month, Saturn will appear in Libra the Scales, followed by Venus.

January’s Morning Stars: The Big Dipper (Ursa Major) is high in the sky. Follow the handle of the Dipper to reach the bright star Arcturus in the constellation Boötes. Continue the handle to the constellation Virgo with its bright star Spica. Also prominent is Leo the Lion, below Ursa Major.

January 1 New Moon at 6:14 a.m. (EDT)
January 2 After the Sun sets, look west to see the thin crescent Moon and brilliant Venus
January 3 The Quadrantid meteor shower peaks this morning
January 5 Jupiter is at opposition, rising in the east as the Sun sets, and setting in the west as the Sun rises
January 7 First Quarter Moon at 10:39 p.m. (EDT)
January 11 Venus is at inferior conjunction, moving into the morning sky
January 14 Jupiter is left of the almost Full Moon
January 15 Full Moon is at 11:52 p.m. (EDT)
January 22 Mars is to the lower left of the Moon
January 23 The Moon is now to the lower right of Mars, very close to Spica
January 24 Last Quarter Moon at 12:19 a.m. (EDT)
January 25 Saturn is only 1o or 2o from the Moon
January 28 The crescent Moon is near Venus
January 30 New Moon at 4:39 p.m. (EDT)
January 31 The Moon is lower right of Mercury