Wednesday 10th February 2016
After a frustrating few weeks of constant cloud, the current clear skies provide an ideal opportunity to check out the alignment of the five visible planets in the early morning sky.
Until the 20th February, all five visible planets will sit in a line from the horizon, for the first time since 2005.
Dr Alan Duffy, research fellow at Swinburne University in Melbourne, said that this reasonably rare alignment is “essentially a quirk” of the universe. All the planets sit on a flat plane but have different yearly cycles – so for all five visible planets to happen to line up is “something well worth seeing,” he said.
Check out the sky from 5:00 am until about 5:20 am (AEDT)
Venus and Jupiter are easiest to see and Mars will have it’s distinctive red glow.
Mercury is close to the horizon, there is only a narrow time window after it has appeared before the sun comes up. You will need a clear view of the eastern horizon, uninhibited by trees, etc.