Another chance to see five planets lined up in the sky, weather permitting, is on Saturday. (Petar Petrov, The Associated Press)
Estimated reading time: 1-2 minutes
NEW YORK — Wake up early this weekend to catch a celestial spectacle: Five planets will line up in the sky before sunrise on Saturday.
Saturn, Neptune, Jupiter, Uranus and Mercury will appear together, weather permitting. Here’s how to spot the planet’s parade.
When and where can I see them?
For the best views, find a spot with little light pollution and a clear view of the horizon.
Mercury will be last seen about an hour before sunrise. If you go outside at that time, you’ll be able to see the five planets stretching across the sky—from Mercury lower on the horizon to Saturn higher in the sky—until the sun comes up.
Do I need binoculars or a telescope?
Some planets will be easier to spot than others.
Jupiter and Saturn will be very bright and easier to see. Mercury will be slightly fainter, although it may still be visible to the naked eye. To get a view of Neptune and Uranus, you’ll likely need to break out a pair of binoculars or a telescope.
How common is this?
There was another lineup of five planets in March, with a slightly different composition. A triple planetary alignment will occur in July. This occurs when the orbits of the planets line up on one side of the sun from Earth’s perspective.