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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 October 2 to 16, 2023

    Mercury is undergoing a fine apparition in the morning sky until mid-October. At dawn, 45 minutes before sunrise, look for a tiny dot of light just above the horizon, almost due east.

    Venus is the dazzling Morning Star that appears above the eastern horizon three and a half hours before sunrise.  At the start of civil dawn, Venus shines brightly some 35 degrees high. On the morning of October 10, the thin waning crescent Moon hangs 6 degrees to the upper left of the Morning Star.

    Mars is now lost in the glare of sunset and cannot be seen. The Red Planet passes behind the Sun (conjunction) on November 18 and will emerge at dawn in early 2024.

    Jupiter is a beacon in the sky during the night. The bright Giant Planet emerges above the east-northeast horizon around 8 p.m., and culminates 58 degrees high in the south around 2:30 a.m. During the evening and night of October28 to 29, the full Moon and Jupiter form a remarkable pair, with the gap between them decreasing to just 2 ½ degrees.

    Saturn appears 15 degrees above the southeast horizon at dusk, culminates 32 degrees high in the south around 10 p.m., and sinks below the west-southwest horizon around 3 a.m. The waxing gibbous Moon shines near the Ringed Planet on the evenings of October 23 and 24.

    See also

    Monthly Sky

    The Pocket Planetarium

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