A celestial straight: Five planets to align in order in June

The predawn sky in June will host a parade of planets in their proper schoolroom order.

A Rare, 5-Planet Alignment Will Be Visible This Month
Leer en Español

Devoted sky-gazers and curious early risers can catch an unusual planetary alignment in the dawn sky: Five planets — Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn — in an arc across the Eastern sky, and in order of their distance from the Sun.

The last time the five planets were aligned in such a fashion was 2004, according to a media release from the American Astronomical Society.

Those interested should look East about a half hour before Sunrise. In the early part of June, particularly 3-4 June, bright Venus won’t be that far above the horizon, and tracing an elliptic arc to the Southeast will reveal red Mars quite close to Jupiter, with Saturn further South at the tail end of the arc.

Mercury will be there in the early days of June, but so low to the horizon, you might not see it without a very clear view to the horizon.

It may also rise so late that it will appear faint against the glare of the rising Sun, so a pair of binoculars might be necessary, despite the fact these five planets are often called “naked eye planets” since they do not require a telescope to view under ideal conditions.

As June progresses, Mercury will rise higher and brighter before sunrise, and Jupiter will separate from Mars as Saturn moves even further along the arc.

Possibly the best date to catch the alignment will be 24 June, when a crescent Moon will be visible between Venus and Mars, a visible stand-in for Earth in this procession of the first five planets out from the Sun.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in