The Night Sky - September 2020
The nights rapidly draw in during September as the Sun heads southwards along the ecliptic and by 10pm BST on a mid-September
evening, the bright summer constellations of Cygnus, Lyra and Aquila are already past the meridian into the south-western sky.
The Square of Pegasus, with Andromeda trailing behind is high in the south-east. High overhead is the distinctive 'W' of
Cassiopeia, a constellation rich in open star clusters - a good binocular target.
Nearer to home, this is the first of two great months to observe Mars which has its closest approach to Earth on October the 6th.
Lying in Pisces, Mars can be seen towards the south-east at the start of the month rising at 9:45pm BST. As well as Mars, September
is also a good month to observe Jupiter which will be visible during all the hours of darkness. It lies in the southernmost
part of the ecliptic in Sagittarius.
Observing the Great Red Spot on Jupiter during August
High Lights of the Month
- 5th-6th: Mars and the Moon
- 14th (before dawn): Venus below a thin crescent Moon
- 25th (late evening): Saturn and Jupiter above a waxing Moon
Information collated from Jodrell Bank and Astronomy Now magazine