NASA sky observation tips for November including meteor showers

NASA just released its monthly video (above) offering tips on what to look for in the sky over the coming weeks.

It’s a busy month, with November highlights including views of Venus, Jupiter, Saturn, the beautiful crescent moon and the Leonid meteors.

First, you will be able to easily see brightly lit Jupiter at night, if the sky is clear. The sun sets just before dawn, just as Venus begins to rise, so if you wake up before dawn and get a clear view of the horizon, you have a good chance of seeing both planets on opposite sides of the sky.

On the morning of November 9, treat yourself to the sight of the beautiful crescent moon hanging directly below Venus in the morning sky before sunrise.

A week later, on November 17, you can see the crescent moon low in the southwest – this time by itself – in the twilight after sunset. “Thanks to the moon illusion, which causes the rising or setting moon to appear larger, a crescent moon lying low near the horizon often appears more attractive,” NASA said.

After sunset on November 20, Saturn appears. Look south to see the planet directly above the quarter moon, with the bright star pair Fomalhaut and Altair joining it. Four days later, you will see a nearly full moon near Jupiter after sunset.

Towards the end of November, look for Venus rising in the morning with the bright star Spica nearby (actually Spica is made up of two large stars orbiting each other).

This month is a great time for the annual Leonid meteor shower. The shower, featuring dust particles from comet Tempel-Tuttle, peaked on the evening of November 17, with the most meteors visible between midnight and dawn on the 18th.

“Leonids tend to be bright, many producing long trains that persist for several seconds after the initial flash of light,” NASA said, adding that to get the best view, “find a safe, dark place, away from bright lights, and lie down. and look straight up.”

Final tip: NASA just released a new app for iPhone and Android that makes it even easier to find the International Space Station as it passes above an altitude of about 250 miles. It’s packed with features and lets you organize notifications so you know exactly when they arrive in your environment. And easy to spot with the naked eye too!

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