The Moon and Venus will make a close approach, passing within a mere 5.4 arcminutes of each other. The Moon will be 25 days old.
From Cambridge, the pair will be visible in the dawn sky, rising at 04:05 (EDT) – 2 hours and 53 minutes before the Sun – and reaching an altitude of 20° above the south-eastern horizon before fading from view as dawn breaks around 06:42.
The Moon will be at mag -10.5; and Venus will be at mag -4.3. Both objects will lie in the constellation Ophiuchus.
They will be close enough to fit within the field of view of a telescope, but will also be visible to the naked eye or through a pair of binoculars.
A graph of the angular separation between the Moon and Venus 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 45° from the Sun, which is in Capricornus at this time of year.
|The sky on 31 January 2019|
25 days old
All times shown in EST.
The circumstances of this event were computed using the DE430 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.
|06 Jan 2019||– Venus at greatest elongation west|
|24 Mar 2020||– Venus at greatest elongation east|
|29 Mar 2020||– Venus at highest altitude in evening sky|
|13 Aug 2020||– Venus at greatest elongation west|
The Moon in conjunction with Venus and Jupiter, with the Very Large Telescope in the foreground. Image © Y. Beletsky, ESO, 2009.