Dominic Ford, Editor
From the Appulses feed
The Moon and Saturn will make a close approach, passing within 1°31' of each other. The Moon will be 27 days old.
From Seattle, the pair will be difficult to observe as they will appear no higher than 15° above the horizon. They will be visible in the dawn sky, rising at 05:28 (PST) – 2 hours and 28 minutes before the Sun – and reaching an altitude of 15° above the south-eastern horizon before fading from view as dawn breaks around 07:31.
The Moon will be at mag -9.7; and Saturn will be at mag 0.4. Both objects will lie in the constellation Libra.
They 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.
A graph of the angular separation between the Moon and Saturn around the time of closest approach is available here.
The positions of the pair at the moment of closest approach will be as follows:
|Object||Right Ascension||Declination||Constellation||Magnitude||Angular Size|
The coordinates above are given in J2000.0. The pair will be at an angular separation of 28° from the Sun, which is in Sagittarius at this time of year.
|The sky on 19 December 2014|
27 days old
All times shown in PST.
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.
|18 Nov 2014||– Saturn at solar conjunction|
|22 May 2015||– Saturn at opposition|
|29 Nov 2015||– Saturn at solar conjunction|
|02 Jun 2016||– Saturn at opposition|