The Moon and Saturn will make a close approach, passing within 2°34' of each other. The Moon will be 7 days old.
From Ashburn, the pair will be visible in the evening sky, becoming accessible around 18:35 (EDT) as the dusk sky fades, 29° above your southern horizon. They will then reach their highest point in the sky at 18:50, 29° above your southern horizon. They will continue to be observable until around 22:47, when they sink below 8° above your south-western horizon.
The Moon will be at mag -11.8; and Saturn will be at mag 0.3. Both objects will lie in the constellation Sagittarius.
They 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 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 85° from the Sun, which is in Virgo at this time of year.
|The sky on 23 October 2020|
7 days old
All times shown in EDT.
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.
|20 Jul 2020||– Saturn at opposition|
|23 Jan 2021||– Saturn at solar conjunction|
|02 Aug 2021||– Saturn at opposition|
|04 Feb 2022||– Saturn at solar conjunction|
The Moon in conjunction with Venus and Jupiter, with the Very Large Telescope in the foreground. Image © Y. Beletsky, ESO, 2009.