Uranus and Neptune in 2010

This article gives directions for finding Uranus and Neptune in 2010. If you've never seen these planets before, you might want to read our general instructions first.

Uranus and Neptune spend 2010 in Pisces and Capricornus, respectively. Click on the chart above for a full-page, printable PDF.
Tony Flanders
Uranus and Neptune spend almost all of 2010 in Pisces and Capricornus, respectively. Both planets are south of the celestial equator, and never get very high in the sky for people at mid-northern latitudes. So it's important to make the best of the relatively short window of opportunity for viewing them.

Neptune reaches opposition to the Sun on August 20th, and Uranus on September 21st. These are the dates when the planets rise around sunset and set around sunrise, and reach their highest in the sky in the middle of the night. Neptune is reasonably well placed in the evening sky from August to mid-November, and Uranus from September through December. They can be observed several months earlier if you're willing to get up before dawn.

Jupiter, the second-brightest planet, spends most of 2010 in close proximity to Uranus, which is a little fainter than any of Jupiter's Galilean satellites. The two fit together in a binocular field for much of the year, and they're within 1° of each other from June 1-16, September 12-25, and December 28th through January 10th. Their closest approach, 26' apart, occurs at 4:14 a.m. on June 8, 2010.

Click here to download a detailed, printable chart for both planets in PDF format.

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