Weekly Stargazing Tips

Provided by StarDate.org. Unless otherwise specified, viewing times are local time regardless of time zone, and are good for the entire Lower 48 states (and, generally, for Alaska and Hawaii).

November 15: Leonid Meteors

The quiet but steady Leonid meteor shower should be at its peak over the next night or two. The gibbous Moon sets by 1 or 2 a.m., so it won’t spoil the display. At the shower’s best, you might see a dozen or more “shooting stars” per hour.

November 16: Bright Triangle

A right triangle of stars decorates Perseus and Andromeda, which are high in the east and northeast as darkness falls. Almach, Andromeda’s third-brightest star, marks the top of the triangle. Algol stands below it, with Mirfak to the left of Algol.

November 17: Cetus

Cetus, the whale or sea monster, is one of the largest constellations. It glides across the southern sky on November evenings. Most of its stars are quite faint, though, so Cetus is difficult to pick out.

November 18: Rising Ram

Aries, the ram, is low in the east at nightfall and soars high across the south in late evening. It’s a faint pattern marked by only a couple of moderately bright stars: Hamal, its brightest, and Sheratan, its second-brightest.

November 19: Orion Returns

Orion, the hunter, is in full view by about 9 or 10 p.m. Look for his three-star belt standing straight up in the east. Orion’s brightest stars line up to the sides of the belt, roughly parallel to the horizon as they rise.

November 20: More Orion

The brightest stars of Orion, which is in the east this evening, are both supergiants. Betelgeuse, at Orion’s shoulder, is a red supergiant, while Rigel, the foot, is blue-white. Look for them flanking the three bright stars that form Orion’s Belt.

November 21: Moon and Aldebaran

The star Aldebaran appears near the Moon the next couple of nights. The eye of Taurus, the bull, stands to the lower left of the full Moon this evening. The Moon will move closer to it later on. Aldebaran will stand even closer to the Moon tomorrow night.