2018, February 5: Jupiter, Mars and Saturn


The three bright outer planets shine in a clear, cold sky this morning,  Bright morning star Jupiter is in the southern skies.  It is 6.8 degrees from Zubenelgenubi.  Jupiter slowly moves eastward compared to the starry background until March 8 when it begins to retrograde.  It passes Zubenelgenubi in June as it retrogrades.

To the lower left of Jupiter, Mars continues its eastward march.  It is 14.8 degrees from Jupiter.  Mars passes 5 degrees from Antares on February 10.

Meanwhile, Saturn is emerging from the sun’s bright glare of its solar conjunction.  It is 29 degrees to the lower left of Mars.  Mars passes Saturn on April 10.  Watch Mars continue to move away from Jupiter, past Antares, and toward Saturn each clear morning.

The articles that follow provide details about the planets visible without optical assistance (binoculars or telescope):

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