Tonight, Uranus will be visible to the naked eye for everyone from Earth to see as a faint star.
As Uranus passes closest to Earth, it will remain 2.8 billion kilometres away when it aligns on the same side of the sun, in what is known as opposition.
You’ll be able to catch a glimpse of the seventh planet from the sun in the eastern sky, just above the horizon, at any point of the night from November 4 into November 5.
If you happen to have a telescope or pair of binoculars lying around, you should be able to see the planet as a pale blue-green colour, which is caused by the presence of methane in the atmosphere and the sun’s light shining on it, The Independent reports.
Uranus’s opposition to Earth coincides with a new Moon, which means that it will appear even brighter.
It is recommended that for the best view of Uranus, you try and view it from areas with as little light pollution as possible. Clearer skies are also preferable.
Tonight’s weather for the UK is noted by the Met Office being good for viewing, although areas of northern Scotland are forecast heavy cloud.
Uranus is considered a ‘strange’ planet by NASA because of its magnetic field and ‘unusual’ orientation of its spin axis.
Although Uranus is not considered a visible planet, at opposition it is bright enough to be visible for someone with excellent eyesight under very dark skies and ideal conditions.
Uranus is not the only planet set to reach opposition with Earth, with Saturn set to be seen in place on August 14, 2022, and Jupiter on September 26, 2022.
If you miss out tonight, then fear not, because the opposition of Uranus to Earth occurs annually. It can be viewed again next year, November 9, 2022.
If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected]