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 Uranus

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 Uranus will make a close approach, passing within 1°23' of each other. The Moon will be 6 days old.

From Cambridge, the pair will be visible in the evening sky, becoming accessible around 16:53 (EDT) as the dusk sky fades, 53° above your southern horizon. They will then reach its highest point in the sky at 17:03, 53° above your southern horizon. They will continue to be observable until around 22:41, when they sink below 8° above your western horizon.

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 -11.8, and Uranus at mag 5.8, both in the constellation Pisces.

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

A graph of the angular separation between the Moon and Uranus 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 01h03m30s +04°35' Pisces -11.8 32'16"6
Uranus 01h01m50s +05°55' Pisces 5.8 3"5

The coordinates above are given in J2000.0. The pair will be at an angular separation of 81° from the Sun, which is in Sagittarius at this time of year.

The sky on 16 January 2016
Twilight ends
Twilight begins

6-day old moon
Waxing Crescent


6 days old

Rise Culm. Set
Mercury 06:38 11:30 16:22
Venus 04:44 09:23 14:01
Moon 11:10 17:39 00:08
Mars 01:05 06:22 11:39
Jupiter 21:17 03:39 09:57
Saturn 04:04 08:47 13:30
All times shown in EST.


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

11 Oct 2015  –  Uranus at opposition
15 Oct 2016  –  Uranus at opposition
19 Oct 2017  –  Uranus at opposition
23 Oct 2018  –  Uranus 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.




Color scheme