Tonight the planet Venus looks like it’s joined the Pleiades Star Cluster. The light from the stars in this cluster takes about 400 years to get to your eyes, while the light from Venus only requires about five minutes to reach us.
The Pleiadesare sometimes known as the “Seven Sisters.” Tonight (4/2) and tomorrow (4/3), they temporarily have an eighth sister.
Good binoculars will not only show Venus shining brightly among the stars of the Pleiades cluster, but you should also be able to detect, just barely, the actual phase of Venus. As Venus orbits the Sun during the next couple of weeks the planet is getting closer to Earth, and its phase is becoming more apparent. Venus goes through phases just like our Moon and for the same reasons – it just takes a lot longer and the apparent size of Venus changes dramatically in the process.
Enjoy the view!