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Five Planets Visible in the Morning Sky

Five planets visible in the night sky.

By Dr. Lisa Will, Resident Astronomer of the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center

For the first time in a decade, five planets are visible with the naked eye at the same time. Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn will be together in the pre-dawn sky starting Wednesday, January 20, 2016.

No special equipment is needed to see these planets. They are not all located in one spot, but rather span the sky from southeast to southwest. The planets are easily seen and tend to shine with a steadier light than the distant, twinkling stars.

The most difficult planet to see is Mercury, due to its small size and closeness to the Sun as it rises in the eastern sky. The other four planets will be much easier to notice.

Don’t worry if clouds interfere with your ability to see the planets this week. The configuration will be visible in the pre-dawn sky for a month, until February 20!

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