Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Tonight's Sky for March 3: Mercury Rises 1 Hour Before the Sun

This morning, the planet Mercury, first from the Sun and hardest of the classical planets to spot, will be rising an hour ahead of the Sun. Normally, this would result in a good appearance as Mercury never strays that far out of the solar glare. Unfortunately, thanks to the time of year, the ecliptic plane is at a very shallow angle in the morning, meaning that, as seen from Earth, Mercury will still hug the horizon despite its actual angular distance from the Sun. Needless to say, optical aid is recommended.  

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