If you haven’t ticked Mercury off your planet bucket list yet, tonight is the night! Use the crescent Moon as your guide and you’ll spot the closest planet to the Sun in no time at all.
After sunset, Mercury is just to the bottom left of the setting Moon. If you keep watching, the Moon moves up to Venus two days later on the 5th November.
Use the above image as a guide. Astronomical images provided by SkySafari, a Simulation Curriculum Company, All rights reserved www.simulationcurriculum.com.
When and where to look:
7:30pm, 3rd November above the western horizon around dusk.
In our solar system, Mercury is the smallest and closest planet to the Sun. A year on Mercury is only 88 days.
The European Space Agency (ESA) and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) currently have a joint mission to Mercury to study the planet more closely than ever before. The name of the spacecraft is BepiColombo. It made its first flyby of Mercury in October 2021 before the craft goes into orbit around Mercury in December 2025.
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There’s always something interesting happening in the night sky and country WA is the best place to catch all the action