What’s Up in the Sky – December 2021
AAA Observers’ December Guide
December’s Evening Planets: Find bright Venus between Sagittarius the Archer and Capricornus the Sea-goat until around 7 PM and setting earlier every night until 6 PM by the end of the month. Jupiter could be found in Aquarius the Water-bearer until 10 PM and setting earlier every night. Saturn could be seen in Capricornus the Sea-goat until 9 PM and setting earlier every night. Uranus will be in Cetus the Sea monster and Neptune in Aquarius the Water Bearer. Dwarf Pluto will be in Capricornus the Sea-goat until around 6 PM.
December’s Evening Stars: Spot the Summer Triangle of Vega in Lyra the Harp; Deneb in Cygnus the Swan; and Altair in Aquila the Eagle, until 9 PM, setting earlier every night. The Winter Triangle of Sirius (the brightest star viewed from Earth) in Canis Major the Great Dog; Betelgeuse in Orion the Hunter; and Procyon in Canis Minor the Small Dog, will be up as of 9 PM. Find Castor and Pollux in Gemini the Twins, Rigel in Orion, Aldebaran in Taurus the Bull, and bright Capella in Auriga the Charioteer. See the stars of constellations Andromeda, Cassiopeia, Perseus, Cepheus, Draco, Aries, Taurus, Pegasus, and Ursa Major and Ursa Minor (the Big and Little Dippers).
December’s Morning Planets: Red Mars could be seen moving between Libra the Scales and Scorpio the Scorpion as of 6 AM. Uranus will be in Cetus the Sea monster until 5 AM, setting earlier each night until 3 AM by the end of the month.
December’s Morning Stars: The Winter Triangle of Sirius, Betelgeuse, and Procyon will be up until morning. Find Capella in Auriga, Arcturus in Boötes the Herdsman, Spica in Virgo, and Aldebaran in Taurus until the morning. See the stars of Leo, Gemini, Orion, Hydra, Hercules, Cassiopeia, Cepheus, Draco, Perseus, and Ursa Major and Ursa Minor (the Big and Little Dippers).
- Dec 4 New Moon at 2:45 AM
- Dec 4 Moon at perigee (221,700 miles away) Closest to Earth in 2021
- Dec 10 First quarter Moon at 8:35 PM
- Dec 11 Venus, Saturn, Jupiter and Moon lineup – sunset
- Dec 14 Geminids Meteor Shower peaks- predawn
- Dec 17 Moon at apogee (252,500 miles away)
- Dec 18 Full Moon at 11:35 PM
- Dec 21 Winter solstice
- Dec 26 Last quarter Moon at 9:25 PM