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Wales Online
Wales Online
Mike Kelly & Daniel Smith

Tonight's your last chance to witness a rare 'parade of planets'

Tonight is the last chance to witness what astronomers often refer to as a 'planetary parade', when seven planets will line up for the first time in 18 years. The phenomena sees Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Neptune and Uranus all align.

And your final chance to see it yourself this time around will be in the early hours of Monday, June 27, just before sunrise (approx 4.46am - depending one where you live in the country). Five of the planets – Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn – will be visible to the naked eye. while the remaining two – Uranus and Neptune – can be spotted with binoculars,reports ChronicleLive.

The seven planets have not appeared in the same line across the horizon since December 2004. Astronomer and founder of Stargazing London, Tom Kerss, told the Sun: "It's well worth setting an early alarm and peering out from your garden, or any south/east-facing window or balcony available to you.

"The planets are easy to pick out even in the relatively light summer sky. Unlike stars, they don't appear to twinkle, and Mars is noticeably orange, whereas Saturn is faintly golden.

"The inner planets, Mercury and Venus, don't get very high above the horizon before sunrise with Mercury, in particular, climbing less than eight degrees before it fades out of view.

"To appreciate them, you'll need a very low - preferably flat - eastern horizon, free from obstructions like trees or buildings. It may be worth scoping out a good viewing spot ahead of time to improve your chances."

Amateur astronomer and science communicator Kevin Walsh added that you'll be able to see the phenomenon if "you look due East about 45 minutes before sunrise".

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