Australasian Science: Australia's authority on science since 1938

This Month's Star Chart

By Sydney Observatory

Your map of the night sky this month.

HIGHLIGHTS IN NOVEMBER 2018
The best time to look at the Moon with a small telescope or binoculars is a few days either side of its first quarter phase, which falls on the 16th. Saturn islow in the west in Sagittarius (the Archer). Mercury is also low in the west, through November moving from Sagittarius (the Archer) to Ophiuchus (the Serpent Bearer) after the first week of the month. Mars is high in the northwest and is in Capricornus (the Sea Goat), moving to Aquarius (the Water Carrier) in the second week of November. Crux (the Southern Cross) islocated to the south, near the horizon, making it difficult to see at this time of year. Pisces (the Fish) and Aries (the Ram) are located in the eastern sky, while the great square of Pegasus can be found in the north.

HIGHLIGHTS IN DECEMBER 2018
The summer solstice is on the 22nd, when the Sun reaches its highest point in the sky for the year, and this day has the most hours of daylight. The best time to look at the Moon with a small telescope or binoculars is a few days either side of its first quarter phase, which falls on the 15th of December. Saturn is low in the west in Sagittarius (the Archer) but vanishes in the twilight mid-month. Mars is high in the northern sky in Aquarius (the Water Carrier). Crux (the Southern Cross) is located to the south, near the horizon, making it difficult to see at this time of year. The summer constellations of Orion (the Hunter) and Taurus (the Bull) are in the northeast. Sirius, the brightest night-time star, is low in the southeast.