Skywatch: Look out for Pleiades and a supermoon


If you’re out early this week, you can locate a feature in the sky that’s usually associated with the winter months. The Pleiades cluster is high in the sky during the winter months but if you look in the east, before sunset, you can catch a glimpse of the “Seven Sisters,” another name for the asterism. Look for the waning crescent moon and Aldebaran, the brightest star in Taurus, to join the feature on Monday and Tuesday mornings. Above is how you’ll find the three before sunrise on Monday.

Courtesy: NASA

The largest planet in the solar system will “pause” in the evening sky at midnight on Tuesday. Jupiter will hit its “stationary” point at that time. That’s when the planet will cease its retrograde, or westward, trek across the sky. Watch for the planet to move east across the sky in the coming months. Jupiter will look like a bright star in the southwestern sky when it “stops” its journey ever so briefly.

Skies will be darker this week thanks to the upcoming New Moon, which arrives at 10:48 p.m. Thursday night.

Advertisement - Story continues below

Because the moon is at perigee, its closest point to Earth during its monthly orbit, early on Friday morning, we can call it a supermoon. Officially, the moon will be a mere 222,097 miles away when this happens. Sadly, we won’t be able to see it due to the sun’s glare.

Courtesy: NASA

Part of the sun’s glare will be obscured on Friday, provided you’re in the right spot. A partial solar eclipse takes place starting at 10:48 p.m. local time. To see this, you’ll need to travel to parts of Antarctica or Australia. It’ll be the first Friday the 13th solar eclipse since 1974 and the last one until 2080.


According to, the maximum eclipse occurs just after midnight here, and above is how it’ll appear to those who make it south in time for the show. Happy hunting!