Dominic Ford, Editor
From the Appulses feed
The Moon and 134340 Pluto will make a close approach, passing within 0°29' of each other. The Moon will be 26 days old.
From Washington, the pair will be difficult to observe as they will appear no higher than 19° above the horizon. They will be visible in the dawn sky, rising at 04:41 (MDT) – 2 hours and 25 minutes before the Sun – and reaching an altitude of 19° above the south-eastern horizon before fading from view as dawn breaks around 06:49.
The Moon will be at mag -10.6, and 134340 Pluto at mag 14.7, both in the constellation Sagittarius.
The pair will be close enough to fit within the field of view of a telescope, but will also be visible through a pair of binoculars.
A graph of the angular separation between the Moon and 134340 Pluto 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 coordinates above are given in J2000.0. The pair will be at an angular separation of 48° from the Sun, which is in Aquarius at this time of year.
|The sky on 01 March 2019|
25 days old
All times shown in MST.
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.
|12 Jul 2018||– 134340 Pluto at opposition|
|14 Jul 2019||– 134340 Pluto at opposition|
|15 Jul 2020||– 134340 Pluto at opposition|
|18 Jul 2021||– 134340 Pluto at opposition|
The Moon in conjunction with Venus and Jupiter, with the Very Large Telescope in the foreground. Image © Y. Beletsky, ESO, 2009.