When to view the five planets visible in the October night sky

When to view the five planets visible in the October night sky

Mercury will be visible in October (Getty)

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

During October we will be able to see five bright planets in our night sky - but you'll have to pick your moments if you want to see them.

In the first 10 days of the month, Mercury sits low in the eastern sky, but on October 11 Jupiter will also be visible next to Mercury. 

It will be seen less than a degree to the right of Mercury, the first planet conjunction of the month.

On October 27 Venus is set to become prominent in the southwest sky, the third conjunction of the month. Mars will also shift away from Saturn and stand-alone in the south-southwest sky at dusk.

As Saturn fades in November, Venus will become a bright star over the coming months.

But where should you look for the planets?

Mercury is best seen in the low east about 45 minutes before sunrise, however after this first week of October, it will become harder to see from mid-northern latitudes.

In order to see both Mercury and Jupiter together, you will need to look at the sky 30 to 40 minutes before sunrise on October 11. Venus can be seen with binoculars in the west-southwest sky.

Mars can be easily identified on October 8, as it will appear far to the lower right of the moon, which will be almost due south as night falls.

A conjunction between Venus and Saturn will be visible on October 29, 45 minutes after sunset low near the southwest horizon. The brighter planet will be Venus.