Venus, Moon and Bright Star Create Celestial Triangle Sunday

Early on Sunday morning (Nov. 11), early risers will be treated to a beautiful array of a brilliant planet, a bright star and a lovely slender crescent moon. The trio will form an eye-catching isosceles triangle in the dawn twilight.

Sun., Nov. 11, 6 a.m. About an hour before sunrise, the moon joins the planet Venus and the bright star Spica in the morning sky.

The sky triangle will consist of Venus, the bluish star Spica in the constellation Virgo and a waning crescent moon, just 8-percent illuminated and only 2 1/2 days from new phase, as well as a total solar eclipse which will be visible over parts of Australia.

Shortly after 4 a.m. local time, Venus and the moon will emerge side-by-side above the horizon, a little to the south (right) of due east. Venus will be about 6 degrees to the left of the slender moon; your clenched fist, held at arm’s length, measures roughly 10 degrees, so Venus and the moon will be separated by about half a fist. About an hour later, Spica twinkles low through the glow of dawn, 9 degrees below both Venus and the moon.

Consider the isosceles triangle to be inverted; the base angles formed by Venus and the moon and the legs of the triangle extending downward toward Spica which marks the vertex angle.

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