The Moon in conjunction with Venus and Jupiter, with the Very Large Telescope in the foreground. Image © Y. Beletsky, ESO, 2009.

Close approach of the Moon and Saturn

Dominic Ford, Editor
From the Appulses feed

Please wait
Loading 0/4
Click and drag to rotate
Mouse wheel to zoom in/out
Touch with mouse to dismiss
The sky at

The Moon and Saturn will make a close approach, passing within 1°52' of each other. The Moon will be 2 days old.

From Fairfield, the pair will be difficult to observe as they will appear no higher than 10° above the horizon. They will become visible around 18:44 (EDT) as the dusk sky fades, 10° above your south-western horizon. They will then sink towards the horizon, setting 1 hour and 17 minutes after the Sun at 19:42.

Begin typing the name of a town near to you, and then select the town from the list of options which appear below.

The Moon will be at mag -9.5, and Saturn at mag 0.5, both in the constellation Libra.

The pair will be too widely separated to fit within the field of view of a telescope, but will be visible to the naked eye or through a pair of binoculars.

At around the same time, the two objects will also share the same right ascension – called a conjunction.

A graph of the angular separation between the Moon and Saturn around the time of closest approach is available here.

The positions of the two objects at the moment of closest approach will be as follows:

Object Right Ascension Declination Constellation Magnitude Angular Size
The Moon 14h33m20s -14°45' Libra -9.5 31'53"9
Saturn 14h35m00s -12°55' Libra 0.5 15"4

The coordinates above are given in J2000.0. The pair will be at an angular separation of 26° from the Sun, which is in Virgo at this time of year.

The sky on 06 October 2013
Sunrise
06:54
Sunset
18:26
Twilight ends
19:57
Twilight begins
05:22

1-day old moon
Waxing Crescent

5%

1 day old

Planets
Rise Culm. Set
Mercury 09:09 14:11 19:13
Venus 10:54 15:34 20:14
Moon 08:47 14:01 19:16
Mars 02:44 09:40 16:36
Jupiter 23:43 07:12 14:39
Saturn 09:08 14:25 19:42
All times shown in EDT.

Source

The circumstances of this event were computed using the DE405 planetary ephemeris published by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL).

This event was automatically generated by searching the ephemeris for planetary alignments which are of interest to amateur astronomers, and the text above was generated based on an estimate of your location.

Related news

28 Apr 2013  –  Saturn at opposition
10 May 2014  –  Saturn at opposition
22 May 2015  –  Saturn at opposition
03 Jun 2016  –  Saturn at opposition

Image credit

The Moon in conjunction with Venus and Jupiter, with the Very Large Telescope in the foreground. Image © Y. Beletsky, ESO, 2009.

Fairfield

Latitude:
Longitude:
Timezone:

41.14°N
73.26°W
EDT

Color scheme