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Breakdown: So many planets in the March sky- here’s when you should look up

Published: Mar. 8, 2022 at 11:50 AM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) -Several planets will be visible this month, so March is a great time to look up.

On March 10, the first quarter moon which is also referred to as the half moon because the Sun’s rays illuminate exactly 50% of the Moon’s surface. This phase

Daylight Saving time March 13th. This is when the sun will set an hour later.

March 16th- Venus is in conjunction with Mars this morning, but it should be easy to spot in the dawn twilight. Venus is the brightest planet and rises in the east-southeast about two hours before sunup. Mars won’t be as bright but you can find it sitting to the lower right of Venus. Mars (the red planet) will appear as a small shimmering disk resembling a star in most instruments, especially since it is at a low altitude above the horizon.

On March 18th check out the full worm moon! The more northern Native American tribes knew this Moon as the full Crow Moon, when the cawing of crows signaled the end of winter. It was also referred to as the Full Crust Moon, because the snow cover becomes crusted from falling by day and freezing at night. The Full Sap Moon marking the time of sapping maple trees is another variation.

March 20th, Venus arrives at its greatest western elongation from the Sun. In a telescope it will as a crescent shape at the start of this month but will appear bigger by the end of the month. Today also marks the start of spring in the Northern Hemisphere and autumn in the Southern Hemisphere.

March 24th get ready for the triangle of planets, Saturn, Mars, and Venus. Saturn is not as visible in the first part of the month because it hides in the sunrise glow but begins to emerge low in the east-southeastern sky. The last week of March in the morning will provide great opportunities to identify and will be accompanied by two other morning planets, Venus and Mars. Today, all three will form a wide isosceles triangle low in the east-southeast about 90 minutes before sunrise. Orange Mars and slightly brighter yellow-white Saturn form the base along with dazzling Venus.

The morning of March 29th the crescent Moon Joins Venus, Saturn, And Mars. On this morning the waning crescent Moon joins Venus, Saturn and Mars. About 45 minutes before sunrise, look low toward the east-southeast horizon to sight the slender lunar sliver positioned below and to the right of Venus and below and to the left Mars. Saturn will sit just below Venus; The moon and planets will be slightly closer March 30th morning when they’re in conjunction.

At the very end of the month on March 31, Jupiter finally emerges into view, extremely low in the bright dawn this morning; however, you most definitely will need to use binoculars to scan for it, just above the eastern horizon about 25 minutes before sunrise.

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