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Planets visible to the naked eye

  • Photo: Marc Jobin
    Planets visible to the naked eye

    Here's a look at the planets that will be observable with the naked eye in the coming days. Follow these guidelines to find out where and when to look for them.

    From February 19 to March 4, 2024

    Mercury is too close to the Sun and not visible presently. The tiny planet will pass behind the Sun (superior conjunction) on February 28 and will emerge in the evening sky, where it will make a fine apparition after sunset between March 8 and April 6.

    Venus is getting closer to the Sun’s glare. The dazzling Morning Star emerges above the east-southeast horizon about 45 minutes before sunrise. At the start of civil dawn, Venus shines about 4 degrees high in the southeast. On the mornings of February 21, 22, and 23, 30 minutes before sunrise, use binoculars to locate Mars, much fainter, less than a degree below Venus.

    Mars is emerging from behind the Sun and gradually reappears in the morning sky. Use binoculars to locate the faint Red Planet, very low in the southeast at dawn, 30 minutes before sunrise; dazzling Venus shines brightly less than a degree above it on the mornings of February 21, 22 and 23.

    Jupiter shines like a beacon in the sky during the evening and first hours of the night. The bright (magnitude –2.2) Giant Planet appears at dusk more than 50 degrees high in the southwest, and disappears in the west-northwest around 10:30 p.m. During the evening of March 10, the waxing crescent Moon shines less than 3 degrees to the right of Jupiter.

    Saturn is too close to the Sun and not visible presently. The Ringed Planet will pass behind the Sun (conjunction) on February 28 and gradually reappear at dawn in April.

    See also

    Monthly Sky

    The Pocket Planetarium

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