Mercury at Maximum Elongation

Today Mercury reaches maximum elongation, the furthest point it will reach from the Sun in the sky and the highest it will be above the sunset for this evening apparition. The planet is easily visible as a bright, starlike object about 18° above the setting Sun as twilight begins. Over the next couple weeks Mercury will slide back into the sunset, heading for inferior conjunction on March 4th.

Mercury Events for 2013

  Date UT Date HST Separation
Superior Conjunction Jan 18 08:44UT Jan 17 22:44HST  
Maximum Elongation Feb 16 20:59UT Feb 16 10:59HST 18.1°E
Inferior Conjunction Mar 4 12:55UT Mar 4 02:55HST  
Maximum Elongation Mar 31 21:59UT Mar 31 11:59HST 27.8°W
Superior Conjunction May 11 20:57UT May 11 10:57HST  
Maximum Elongation Jun 12 16:59UT Jun 12 06:59HST 24.3°E
Inferior Conjunction Jul 9 18:39UT Jul 9 08:39HST  
Maximum Elongation Jul 30 08:59UT Jul 29 22:59HST 19.6°W
Superior Conjunction Aug 24 20:37UT Aug 24 10:37HST  
Maximum Elongation Oct 9 09:59UT Oct 8 23:59HST 25.3°E
Inferior Conjunction Nov 1 20:12UT Nov 1 10:12HST  
Maximum Elongation Nov 18 01:59UT Nov 17 15:59HST 19.5°W
Superior Conjunction Dec 29 06:00UT Dec 28 20:00HST  
 
Source: NASA Sky Calendar and the Mercury Chaser’s Calculator

 

Author: Andrew

An electrical engineer, amateur astronomer, and diver, living and working on Mauna Kea, Hawai'i.

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