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 Venus

Mon, 02 Jan 2017 at03:23 EST(380 days ago)
08:23 UTC

Dominic Ford, Editor
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The sky at

The Moon and Venus will make a close approach, passing within 1°50' of each other. The Moon will be 4 days old.

From Ashburn (click to change), the pair will become visible at around 17:14 (EST) as the dusk sky fades, 31° above your south-western horizon. They will then sink towards the horizon, setting 3 hours and 49 minutes after the Sun at 20:43.

The Moon will be at mag -10.7, and Venus at mag -4.4, both in the constellation Aquarius.

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 Venus 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 22h03m20s -11°24' Aquarius -10.7 30'53"5
Venus 22h05m20s -13°11' Aquarius -4.4 21"9

The coordinates above are given in J2000.0. The pair will be at an angular separation of 47° from the Sun, which is in Sagittarius at this time of year.

The sky on 02 January 2017
Sunrise 07:28
Sunset 16:58
Twilight ends
Twilight begins

4-day old moon
Age of Moon
4 days

All times shown in EST.
Rise Culm. Set
Mercury 06:31 11:25 16:18
Venus 10:06 15:26 20:46
Moon 10:18 15:48 21:19
Mars 10:33 16:09 21:44
Jupiter 01:00 06:40 12:20
Saturn 05:55 10:42 15:30


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

26 Oct 2015, 02:59 EDT  –  Venus at greatest elongation west
12 Jan 2017, 10:52 EST  –  Venus at greatest elongation east
03 Jun 2017, 01:58 EDT  –  Venus at greatest elongation west
17 Aug 2018, 03:58 EDT  –  Venus at greatest elongation east

Image credit

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




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