Today Mercury will be at superior conjunction. After today the planet will reappear in the evening sky, rising high enough from the Sun’s glow to be seen early next month.
Superior conjunction is when the planet passes around the far side of the Sun as seen from Earth. For a few weeks the planet will be lost in the Sun’s glare, hidden from view.
As Mercury is on an orbit inside that of Earth’s it will see both inferior and superior conjunctions as it passes from the evening sky to the dawn sky and back again.
|Mercury Events for 2017|
|Maximum Elongation||Jan 19||24.1°W||+0.0|
|Superior Conjunction||Mar 6|
|Maximum Elongation||Apr 1||19.0°E||+0.2|
|Inferior Conjunction||Apr 19|
|Maximum Elongation||May 17||25.8°W||+0.7|
|Superior Conjunction||Jun 21|
|Maximum Elongation||Jul 30||27.2°E||+0.6|
|Inferior Conjunction||Aug 26|
|Maximum Elongation||Sep 12||17.9°W||-0.1|
|Superior Conjunction||Oct 8|
|Maximum Elongation||Nov 24||22.0°E||-0.1|
|Inferior Conjunction||Dec 12|
|Source: NASA Sky Calendar and the Mercury Chaser’s Calculator|