Predawn Hours is hosting a planet-watching party for skywatchers this week. Jupiter, Venus, Mars, and Saturn will be visible in a diagonal line connected to a waning crescent moon.
Before sunrise, look for this cosmic band in the sky between east and southeast. You can usually distinguish between planets and stars because they are brighter and less luminous. Jupiter will be at its lowest and furthest to the left, followed by Venus, Mars and Saturn drawing an invisible line moving up and to the right.
To help discover planets, an app like Stellarium can be very useful.
A fifth planet also appears in the night sky, but not at the same time. Mercury can be seen in the evening, but will emerge before others appear in the morning.
The group of quadruped realms will appear every morning for the rest of the month as the moon shrinks in the sky. Over the coming nights we will see this smiling moon slip under the arrangement of the planets on successive nights. It confirms Saturn on April 25, Mars on the following night, and it confirms Jupiter and Venus on April 27.
Venus and Jupiter will continue to be so close that they “almost collide” in the atmosphere on April 30, According to NASA† In fact, this is the closest appearance since 2016 and will probably be easier to spot this time due to its more favorable positions in relation to the rising morning sun.
Of course, the planets aren’t really in danger of collision, because they’re actually millions of miles away. It appears to be close to our view on Earth. If Venus were to approach Jupiter, it would likely be pulled by the gravity of the gas giant and eventually swallowed up. That is, if it is not destroyed, because it is first pelted by dozens of Jupiter’s moons.
This would make for a rare and terrifying sight in the night sky if that happened.
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