This Week's Night Sky: A Lunar Eclipse and Mars Meets a Lion
As summer reaches its official end, Venus puts on a show and a blood moon appears.
That “star” is the second planet from the sun, Venus, shining about 17 times brighter than Jupiter, the other major planet visible in morning skies this month. And on Monday, September 21, Venus puts on its best morning show for the entire year, reaching magnitude 4.8, the brightest it can get in our skies.
Through a small telescope, the planet's disk will look like a miniature version of the crescent moon, thanks to the geometry of our two worlds in relation to the sun. You don't want to miss this show because Venus won't appear this bright and high in the sky again until 2016.
The September equinox marks one of the four major turning points in the seasonal cycle.