Space

Five Planets Line Up This Month

We'll be able to witness a rare phenomenon in the night sky this month. Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn will line up and be visible to the naked eye.

The approach of the 5 planets will be visible on the horizon near the Moon from January 20 to February 20.

Dr. Tanya Hill, Senior Curator at the Melbourne Planetarium, in a statement for Australian Geographic, explained that if you miss this approach in January and February, you'll have the opportunity to see it again in August this year and then in October 2018.

Dr. Alan Duffy from the Swinburne University of Technology advises all those who would like to get a glimpse of the phenomenon to find an open space - far from tall buildings and trees.

For a clearer view you have to get away from the city lights. This way you'll enjoy the complete radiance of the 5 planets next to each other.

Planets

Venus and Jupiter are very easy to spot though because they are among the brightest objects in the night sky. Mars, with its characteristic red color, is also easy to find and observe.

Once you manage to find 1 of these 3 planets, all you have to do then is create an imaginary line from it to the Moon's position. Look for the other 4 planets along this imaginary line.

"The phenomena that are visible with the naked eye are not that many in number. And this one is definitely among those worth seeing, " Dr. Duffy is categorical.

Whenever 2, 3 or 4 planets in the Solar System line up in straight line above the Earth's horizon, we see an astronomical phenomenon called a "small parade".

It is much rarer to witness a large parade of the planets, when 5 or more planets line up above the horizon.

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