By 9 p.m. in late October, the constellation Orion is directly east. You should be able to see the three belt stars pointing upward form the horizon. As the night moves on, he will move higher, and you should be able to see the three stars of his sword hanging from his belt, pointing to the right. Orion looks like a large hourglass with his belt in the center.

The center star in the sword is not a star, but it is really the Orion Nebula. With your eye, it looks like a fuzzy star. A pair of binoculars shows it be the nebula. In a telescope, this is one of the prize objects of the night sky. Enjoy!

Come join us at the Insperity Observatory for Public Night on the first Friday each month from sunset to 10 p.m. and check out this celestial wonder and many more: humbleisd.net/observatory.

Aaron Clevenson
Author: Aaron ClevensonEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
I am the observatory director at the Insperity Observatory in Humble ISD. I am also an adjunct astronomy professor at Lone Star College-Montgomery where I teach solar system astronomy and stars and galaxies astronomy. I am the author of the astronomy textbook, “Astronomy for Mere Mortals.” I am a past president of the North Houston Astronomy Club, and was the chair of Astronomy Day in Southeast Texas in 2015 and 2016. He is an observing program director with The Astronomical League, coordinates their Master Observer Progression Awards, and has authored six of their observing programs.

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