Three planets appear at dusk this weekend as Jupiter and Saturn still cool together at last month̵
Astronomy magazine reports that all planets will be visible within about 2.3 degrees tonight (this is approximately the width of your soft and ring finger when held away from your body at arm’s length). Mercury will be the lowest of the three in the sky, Jupiter will be the brightest, and Saturn will be the darkest.
Binoculars can help you get a better view, while even a cheap backyard telescope can offer a chance to see some of Jupiter’s larger moons. This may be a good idea to try when Mercury and Saturn disappear below the horizon and it’s a little darker outside.
To make sure you catch the whole trio, the key is to go outside immediately after sunset, as Mercury and Saturn will sink quickly below the horizon within an hour. Although the planets may be closest on Saturday, they will continue to gather as they swap over the next few nights, so you have a few shots to catch them as something like a space Pokemon game.
As always, if amateur astrophotographers among you take some great images of the celestial gathering, please share them with me on Twitter @EricCMack.
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