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One of the least known components of our solar system is the interplanetary dust that fills the disk in which the inner planets revolve. These microscopic dust particles can be seen only under special circumstances. They are very small and very few and far between, but numerous enough to cause most of the meteors that we see streaking through the night skies.
They are also visible en masse as a faint haze along the ecliptic really dark nights, known as the zodiacal light.
The zodiacal light is brightest when we look towards the sun — when it's not up. The best times of the night are just after evening twilight and just before morning twilight, but even then the light is hard to see. Chances improve at certain times of year when the ecliptic is nearly vertical in the sky, particularly September and October in the morning and February and March in the evening.
This week we enter the first of two viewing windows for the zodiacal light in the morning sky. For the next two weeks, it will be visible about half an hour before the beginning of morning twilight, forming a huge dim cone of light in the eastern sky.