Know your planets

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A NUMBER of astronomical phenomena are due to occur during July, although budding star gazers will be best served to seek a spot without much light pollution, such as the Sierra de las Nieves or Serrania de Ronda, in order to catch the best view.

On July 4, Earth reached its furthest point away from the Sun, known as Aphelion, and Mars will be visible for most of the night throughout the month, while in the late afternoon and early evening eagle-eyed observers can witness the setting of Jupiter.

During the last few days of the month Mercury will appear at dawn, although locating it might prove tricky due to its low elevation above the horizon, whereas Saturn will be more easily located as it moves in a retrograde motion within the Ophiuchus constellation during the hours of darkness.

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At the end of July, Venus will also put in an appearance around sunset, while the most important meteor shower of the month, the Delta-Aquarids, will reach its peak on the 28 and 29.

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