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

Dominic Ford, Editor
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The sky at

The Moon and Venus will make a close approach, passing within 0°58' of each other. The Moon will be 3 days old.

From Washington, the pair will become visible around 17:42 (MDT) as the dusk sky fades, 22° above your south-western horizon. They will then sink towards the horizon, setting 2 hours and 39 minutes after the Sun at 20:01.

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 -10.0, and Venus at mag -4.0, both in the constellation Capricornus.

The pair will be a little too widely separated to fit comfortably 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 20h54m50s -20°20' Capricornus -10.0 30'10"4
Venus 20h54m10s -19°22' Capricornus -4.0 12"8

The coordinates above are given in J2000.0. The pair will be at an angular separation of 33° from the Sun, which is in Sagittarius at this time of year.

The sky on 28 December 2019
Sunrise
07:45
Sunset
17:23
Twilight ends
18:56
Twilight begins
06:12

2-day old moon
Waxing Crescent

8%

2 days old

Planets
Rise Culm. Set
Mercury 07:19 12:02 16:45
Venus 09:57 14:59 20:00
Moon 09:55 14:51 19:47
Mars 04:37 09:41 14:44
Jupiter 07:43 12:30 17:18
Saturn 08:42 13:35 18:28
All times shown in MST.

Source

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

05 Jan 2019  –  Venus at greatest elongation west
24 Mar 2020  –  Venus at greatest elongation east
27 Mar 2020  –  Venus reaches highest point in evening sky
13 Aug 2020  –  Venus at greatest elongation west

Image credit

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

Washington

Latitude:
Longitude:
Timezone:

37.13°N
113.51°W
MDT

Color scheme