Sunrise Sunset

Fri., June 15 5:06 8:17

Sat., June 16 5:06 8:17

Sun., June 17 5:06 8:18

Mon., June 18 5:06 8:18

Tues., June 19 5:06 8:18

Wed., June 20 5:06 8:19

Thurs., June 21 5:07 8:19

Fri., June 22 5:07 8:19

Sunday morning offers an impressive sight for those up early, particularly for those who have a clear, unobstructed view of the eastern sky. A thin crescent moon appears right next to the bright planet Jupiter, low in the east. The two are in the zodiacal constellation Taurus.

For those with an especially clear view of the eastern horizon there is a special gift. The brightest planet in the sky, Venus, is nearby. Venus is a short distance below and under Jupiter and the moon. Venus is estimated to be 27 million miles away,less than a third the of distance between the Earth and the sun.

Venus is a challenge to spot, as it is close to the horizon and amid the light of a brightening dawn. But Venus will be easier to see in the mornings ahead, as it appears higher and higher. By the end of this month, Venus will appear significantly closer to Jupiter. In July, Venus and Jupiter appear as close twins high in the east. Venus is the brighter of the two.

Our evening planets, Saturn and Mars, appear as though they are getting closer together. They are both in the same zodiacal constellation, Virgo. Saturn appears close to the bright star Spica. It is high in the western sky after sunset. The distinctly reddish Mars is to the west of Saturn. Both are at the same magnitude, but our eye doesn’t distinguish the brightness of a red planet well, so Saturn seems brighter.

Their distance from Earth is quite different. Saturn is 837 million miles away. Mars is 120 million miles away.