Look up into the predawn sky on Thursday (June 23) to see Venus passing the dazzling Pleiades star cluster in the constellation Taurus.
This will make it an intriguing target for sky watching, as the encounter will be visible with a pair of binoculars, weather permitting.
The cluster, also designated Messier 45, will be located a palm-width to the upper left (5.5 degrees celestial north) of Venus, according to Chris Vaughan, an amateur astronomer at SkySafari Software who oversees Space.com’s Night Sky calendar.
Related: The brightest planets in the June night sky: how to see them (and when)
“Optimal viewing time at mid-northern latitudes will be centered around 4 a.m. local time,” Vaughan writes. “Observers in southern latitudes will see the encounter higher and in darker skies about an hour later.”
The exact time of the event varies depending on your specific location, so you’ll want to check a skywatching app like SkySafari or software like Starry Night to check times. Our picks for the best stargazing apps can help you with your planning.
The Pleiades, also known as the “Seven Sisters”, is an open star cluster consisting of more than 800 stars and located about 410 Light years of Land.
If you’re looking for a telescope or binoculars to view the Pleiades and Venus, our guides to the best binocular deals and best telescope deals can now help. Our best astrophotography cameras and best astrophotography lenses to get ready to capture that next stargazing photo.
Related: How to Spot the Pleiades, Hyades, and Other Star Clusters in the Winter Night Sky
Throughout June, skygazers will enjoy other skygazing events, including a rare “parade of the planets” in which all five naked-eye planets will be visible in the predawn sky as they align at their orbital order from the sun. From left to right in the southeastern sky, you can see Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn in a row.
The best opportunity to see this spectacle may come on June 24, as Mercury (usually hidden by the sun’s glare) should rise about an hour before the sun, according to a press release. (opens in a new tab) from Sky & Telescope.
Moon it will continue its journey beyond the morning planets and will end its planetary “meet and greet” with Mercury on June 27.
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