Weekly Stargazing Calendar for 2011-01-10

Unlike last week, this one will be much less eventful.

Here are the positions of the planets for this week:

Mercury: The closest planet to the Sun can be seen between the constellations of Ophiuchus and Sagittarius at dawn and dusk. It no longer forms a triangle with Mars and Pluto as it has in the previous weeks, but the three celestial bodies are still relatively close to each other (unfortunately you will not be able to see Pluto unless you have a telescope).

Venus: The sister planet can be seen between the constellations of Libra, Scorpius and Ophiuchus. Just like Mercury, it can only be seen at dawn and dusk.

Mars: The red planet can be seen between the Sagittarius and Capricornus constellations.

Jupiter and Uranus: The two gas giants are visible very close to each other between the constellations of Aquarius, Pisces and Cetus. Jupiter can easily be spotted with the naked eye, even in highly illuminated cities. However for Uranus you will need a telescope.

Saturn: The ringed giant can be seen with the naked eye in the middle of the Virgo constellation, not far from the bright star Spica.

Neptune: The blue giant requires a telescope pointed between the constellations of Aquarius and Capricornus in order to be seen.

As you know, the Moon has a big impact on the visibility of celestial bodies in the night sky. So here are the Moon’s phases for this week:

Jan. 10

Jan. 11

Jan. 12

Jan. 13

Jan. 14

Jan. 15

Jan. 16