Dominic Ford, Editor
From the Conjunctions feed
The Moon and Saturn will share the same right ascension, with the Moon passing 1°12' to the south of Saturn. The Moon will be 1 days old.
From Ashburn, the pair will be difficult to observe as they will appear no higher than 8° above the horizon. They will become visible at around 17:10 (EDT) as the dusk sky fades, 8° above your south-western horizon. They will then sink towards the horizon, setting 1 hour and 12 minutes after the Sun at 18:02.
The Moon will be at mag -8.3, and Saturn at mag 0.5, both in the constellation Sagittarius.
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.
A graph of the angular separation between the Moon and Saturn around the time of closest approach is available here.
The positions of the two objects at the moment of conjunction 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 15° from the Sun, which is in Sagittarius at this time of year.
|The sky on 27 December 2019|
1 day old
All times shown in EST.
Never attempt to point a pair of binoculars or a telescope at an object close to the Sun. Doing so may result in immediate and permanent blindness.
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.
|09 Jul 2019||– Saturn at opposition|
|20 Jul 2020||– Saturn at opposition|
|02 Aug 2021||– Saturn at opposition|
|14 Aug 2022||– Saturn at opposition|
The Moon in conjunction with Venus and Jupiter, with the Very Large Telescope in the foreground. Image © Y. Beletsky, ESO, 2009.