The Upcoming 'Planet Parade' On June 3 Will Fail To Impress Stargazers. Here's Why

Only 2 of the 6 planets claimed will be visible in this event

After a stunning Total solar eclipse wowed people in April, stargazers are all geared up to witness yet another rare celestial event in June. This astronomical event, known as a “planet parade,” will happen on June 3, during which six planets will be visible, many on the internet claimed. The ”Planetary Alignment” will feature Mercury, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune lining up in a spectacular display. 

Only 2 Planets Will Be Visible

However, Forbes recently published a report calling the claims ”misinformation”. While the six planets will align, not all of them will be visible to the naked eye, due to their vast distance from Earth.

The report said that people will only actually be able to see two planets instead of six, during the so-called “planetary parade”. Only two planets–Mars and Saturn–will be visible to the naked eye, and neither of them will be particularly bright or impressive. 

Jupiter and Mercury, which are too close to the Sun, will be extremely dim and won’t be visible. Meanwhile, a huge telescope and ”lots of patience” will be needed to view Uranus and Neptune as they are too far away.

Another report by Wral News said that this celestial event is far from rare, as it happens several times each year. ”Planets appearing in a line isn’t unusual either. Each planet moves through our sky within a few degrees of “the ecliptic”, the same line the Sun follows through the sky,” the report noted, adding that the event is much more likely to “disappoint than delight.”

What is a Planetary Alignment?

According to Kate Pattle, a lecturer at University College London’s Physics & Astronomy Department, a “planetary alignment” is an astronomical event that happens when, by coincidence, the orbits of several of the planets of the Solar System bring them to roughly the same side of the Sun at the same time.

”This means that they appear in a line on the sky when we view them from Earth. In this case, the planets Jupiter, Mercury, Uranus, Mars, Neptune, and Saturn will form a line across the sky, in that order,” Ms Pattle said. 

However, the planets won’t be in actual orbital alignment and only appear to form a line in the sky when we view them from Earth. The lecturer also explained that although the planets’ orbits have brought them to the same side of the sun as each other, they aren’t close to each other in space. “They’re still millions of miles apart,” she noted. 

April 8, 2024, was the last time the planets were all in alignment. Another notable event will occur on August 28, 2024, featuring another pre-dawn alignment of six planets​